9 Tips That Will Make You a Better Entrepreneur

The joy of success can never be overstated but just because your business or start-up succeeds does not mean there will not be broken promises, unreached money goals and disappointment in the future.

These tips can help you handle the ups and downs and they will make you a better entrepreneur

Be consistent

Being successful does not give you the license to release sub-standard work or not deliver on time. Doing what you are known for is crucial and you must limit the “off” moments; when the product or the service is below par.

No matter what you did in the past, it is in the past and your constant referral to past projects doesn’t help. Just do what you said you would do, when you said you would do it and to the standard you are expected to do it. Consistency is important!

Do not wait

Stop waiting for things to happen or fall in your lap and be pre-emptive. Each work day is packed with questions of how to spend your time, money, and where to focus. Do not be bouncing between distractions. Pick something meaningful and useful to accomplish and do it.

Waiting for work to come isn’t productive. Go out and look for new customers or business opportunities. Every now and then review your goals and every day check the to-do list to hold yourself accountable.

Keep working

You know better than anyone else that nothing worthwhile comes quickly or easily. Just because you have succeeded once, twice, or thrice does not mean it is time to start slowing down or looking to cut corners. Even seemingly small choices matter. Life is packed with small corners to be cut, victimless crimes to be committed, and endless ways to beat the system.

Stop looking for the secret sauce or the quick fix because you know very well that there aren’t any. The only ways is focus, hard work, and time!

Do not over-commit

Do not bite off more than you can chew! You can offer to help or do something, but if it’s not in your area of competency or you do not have the time or the means it will come back to bite you (or ruin your reputation and credibility).

You can’t and should not juggle an endless number of commitments. Every time you say “yes,” you’re saying “no” to something else. Eventually, things blow up in your face. So be real and do not over-commit. If you cannot do something, politely decline.

Do not over-do things

When things get better or harder, the inclination is to do more; work more hours or demand more from others. In the short term, it feels great and the sensible thing to do but when you look back, you’ll find you are just over-doing things and find that you will have actually accomplished very little.

Instead, step back, be still, focus and concentrate on what will take your business forward and dismiss or avoid empty tasks (akin to just moving the furniture around!)

Know when to stop

You are passionate about what you do or sell and are always looking for the moment to tell someone or to make a quick sale. However you must know when to stop! Not everyone or every moment is a selling moment. Not every moment is a moment to make your pitch.

As a general rule, do what you have come to do at the venue you are at or the occasion you are gracing- enough with the sales pitches!

Guard your tongue

The temptation to talk rubbish is always there when you are confronted with a competitor that is not doing as well as you or is doing much better than you. Whichever the case resist the temptation to find something annoying about them that you can go off and tell everyone about.

Guard your tongue!

Protect your crew

Mistakes happen: We’re human. No matter how much the mistake will cost you, do not admonish your crew in front of customers who are essentially strangers. Do it in-house away from customers’ or the competition’s eyes.

And if it is your fault, own it. Do not ever point in another direction.

Protect your image

Being an entrepreneur is a constant balancing act and one often overlooked area of balance is when to share successes or when to share failures via social media. Too much of the “bling” and people won’t be behind you and too much of the “down and out” and they will not take you seriously.

Oversharing is not wise and quickly destroys trust and it is a red flag to your followers, potential customers and business associates. Protect your public image!

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Kwachalelo, be successful, be well.

About Balekile Gausi

A prolific writer covering work, money and lifestyle that passed through university coming away with a very good grasp of public administration, money and banking, international relations. She was a civil servant that quickly opted for self-employment. And as a trained and published writer she has been freelance feature writing for several decades but has also published fiction in Drum and The BBC Focus on Africa Magazine. Now settled and living in Lusaka after many years of living in several cities in Africa and Europe; Balekile is also an avid bird watcher, is married with 3 adult children and has an extraordinary fondness for chikanda ( the Zambian delicatessen that vegans and non-vegans world-wide are putting on their bucket list!)

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