Thanks to the original post at Box of Chocolates, I thought I’d use the ‘smart moves’ they mention and add my own special flavour to it.
There’s a lot of people with their own business, and many of them are on the internet. Some of them are even reading this, and it’s to those people who are looking to improve their business that will find value in these tips.
- Start a blog.
Blogging about your business is a fantastic way of advertising your business on the net, and it gives your business that ‘human face’ that is lacking with most businesses.
- Get good help.
You can’t do everything, as much as you’d like to. Running a successful business works best if you get the right people for the right job. Focus on what you do best, and get others to do the things you’re not good at. If they turn out to be fantastic, keep them. Good help is hard to find. If they suck, then get rid of them! Don’t let emotions play a part in business. The bottom line is profit, so if they’re not helping you to succeed, then they’re helping you to fail.
- Write with a twist.
If you already have a blog, or if you’re trying to find things to write about with the blog you’ve just created because of tip #1, try this with your writing: take a relevent topic that others have alread written but add a new twist to it. Just like this post on improving your business, it’s been done by someone else, but I’ve changed it to add my own unique views. You can do the same with topics that are relevent to your blog.
- Unplug your fax machine.
Anything that you can do with a fax can be done with email instead. Receiving ‘fax spam’ costs you money with toner and paper, while email is free, and easier to manage.
- Stay as small as you can.
Being small allows you to be flexible. If anything happens to influence your business, being small will allow you to handle it much better than being big. Let your business grow naturally, but don’t push it. Don’t grow faster than your ability to handle those unforeseen challenges that can provide barriers or opportunities.
- Stay under the radar.
If you’re doing a great job of providing a valuable service, then your clientele will grow by word of mouth advertising. The less your competitors know about you, the less they can take business away from you. Don’t advertise until you can afford to let your competitors start trying to take business away from you.
- Turn your email off.
Email is very intrusive, and when you ge an email you often feel that you have to read it or respond to it. Urgent email is never urgent. If something’s urgent, they’ll call you. Turn off your email for a few hours and focus your attention on something else. Like your business.
- Raise prices every year.
Just do it. The longer you work, the more experience you have, and the greater is the value of what you do. Raise the prices accordingly. Let people know beforehand, so they’re not surprised, but it’s business – everyone expects the prices to rise!
- Know when to quit.
If you find that you don’t have a passion to work on your business, or you’re even offering your services for free to get clients or because you don’t value enough of what you’re doing, then get out. Give it up. Start again with something you do value, and which you do have a passion for. Without value and passion, you’re wasting your time and will only regret it.
- Get office space.
Having your own office will help you separate your work life from your home life. Keep everything work related at the office, and have your home for yourself. It helps you keep balance in your life. If you have your work at home, it can be very difficult to achieve the balance, as it’s so easy to spend all your time at home, working. Don’t do it. As soon as you can, get your own office and keep your work there.
- BONUS TIP – Love what you do.
As touched upon in #9, if you don’t love what you do, then you should’t be doing it. Make sure your business is based on something that has real value for yourself and for others. If you’re not providing value, then you’re not going to be successful. It’s as simple as that. If you mix a business that’s not providing value, with a lack of love/belief/passion, then your business is only headed for disaster. Loving what you do will become obvious to your clients, and they’ll be much happier buying from you.
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