Being a business owner is radically different than being an employee within a business that belongs to someone else. You tend to watch the business like a hawk, often sacrifice your personal needs and spend so much time running and planning for the business that you can lose sight of your personal goals and plans. As a business owner and having worked with many different business owners during the last 30 years, I have learned a few strategies to help achieve success.
1. Make a List of What’s Working and What’s Not
It’s important to understand your pain points to find solutions to them. This is a tool that my coach, Dan Sullivan of The Strategic Coach, used with me for many years. As a business owner, consider doing this exercise quarterly to fix what’s not working and get rid of what can’t be fixed.
2. Hire the Right Players
Perhaps the business will need reorganizing, but getting the right employees on your team will give you the confidence you need to let go. It can be a scary concept at first, but it’s better for both you as the owner and your trusted employees. It allows your team to grow, and gives you confidence to move forward and maybe even take some meaningful vacation time. Employees will step up to the plate and make decisions on your behalf. This is an essential part of any successful business. (For related reading, see: Starting a Small Business: Hiring Employees.)
3. Bring in the Experts
It can be tempting to try and do it all yourself. But it’s important to understand that there is plenty of help out there. Maybe you need to partner with an accounting firm to ensure your bookkeeping is in order. You might need a professional financial advisor to help with things like succession planning, estate planning and taxes. Maybe outsourcing hiring to a recruiter will help free up some of your valuable time, or perhaps your sales department needs coaching to become more successful. It’s important to recognize your unique abilities and allow others to help with things that are not within your area of expertise. It’s OK to be afraid to fail, but don’t fail because you were afraid to ask for help.
4. Go on a Meaningful Vacation
Although you may have stepped away from your business for a long weekend, or even a full week, it’s important to get away for a long, meaningful vacation at least once per year. If you have the right players, experts and processes in place, your business should run smoothly while you’re away. Use this time away to unwind, reflect on your accomplishments and simply enjoy the non-business portion of your life. You will come back feeling rested and ready to triumph. (For related reading, see: 5 Biggest Challenges Facing Your Small Business.)
5. Understand the Cost
Remember that achieving a goal always comes with a price. Whether it costs money, time, relationships or a combination of all three, make sure your goals are worth the price you are paying. If achieving the goal is not worth your time, money or relationships, you may need to reevaluate.
Although there is no concrete method to achieving success as a business owner, these five strategies could help make your organization run a bit smoother, sending you down the path to success.
(For more from this author, see: 6 Life Events That Call for Professional Financial Advice.)