★ Tip #1. Be Small, Yet Think Big.
One of the most common questions of small business start-ups is “How can I compete with my big competitors?” Small businesses have inherent advantages over big businesses including flexibility to respond quickly, able to provide a more personalized service. Make sure that your business takes maximum advantage of those areas that represent the strengths of small companies.
★ Tip #2. Say Thank You.
Say Thank You a lot! Tell your customers and employees how much you appreciate them, Better yet, do it the old fashioned way: take pen to paper and write them a note.
★ Tip #3. Turn Off The News.
If you watch TV news you probably expect the world to end any day. Unemployment rates, national debts and fuel price can kill the passion to start or grow the business. But is that news you can use? Watch the changes but don’t expect the global business apocalypsis. Want to feel better about the world and your business? Turn off the news and get back to work.
★ Tip #4. No Cash – No Profit.
Your business has to generate more cash than it uses if you’re going to survive. But what a lot of people don’t understand is that you can’t spend profits unless they’re cash profits. Paper profits aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on when it comes to survival and growth. In fact, even a very successful company can go – or grow – broke if they don’t watch their cash position. The sooner you have your customer’s money, the sooner you can use it.
★ Tip #5. Know What You Know, What You Don't Know And Who Knows What You Don't.
No one knows everything, so don't come off as a know-it-all. Surround yourself with advisors and mentors who will nurture you to become a better leader and businessman. Find successful, knowledgeable individuals with whom you share common interests and mutual business goals that see value in working with you for the long-term.
★ Tip #6. Make Sure You Get Paid.
What good is being your own boss if you don’t get paid for your work? Wherever possible collect 10%, 15% or 25% of your fee upfront and your client’s reaction to that request will tell you a lot about their capability to pay you. Wherever possible use contracts and keep all records which shows you play for real and you are able to manage your business.
★ Tip #7. Pay Attention On Taxes.
The way you structure your business will provide guidance as to how soon you need to begin paying taxes on your earnings. Also keep in mind that Social Security and Medicare tax withholdings are entirely on your shoulders. If you own a corporation and/or have any employees you are responsible for all withholdings from salaries and wages.
★ Tip #8. Pick Up Your Niche.
Many tiny commercial operation owners attain in business which have been frequency singular or innovative. Take batch of your skills, interests, as great as practice story to name the commercial operation which is most matches for you.
★ Tip #9. Fast, Good, Cheap. Pick Any Two.
Serious difficulty awaits those who try to be all 3 in the market place. Stick with what you do best.
★ Tip #10. Be Flexible Except The Core Values.
It’s a given that your plans and strategies will change as time goes on. This flexibility for rapid change is an inherent advantage of small over large business. However, no matter the pressure for immediate profits do not compromise on core values.
★ Tip #11. Believe In Your Success And Accept Criticism.
The confidence is contagious with your employees, customers and everyone you deal with. Believe in yourself, in your company and your success! It’s important to know the opinion of others, so be ready to listen and learn. And it’s OK to know the honest opinion of your employees even when it conflicts with yours.
★ Tip #12. Rebound Quickly From Setbacks.
There surely will be plenty of ups and downs as you build the business. Learn from the setbacks and move on. You can’t change the past.
★ Tip #13. Periodically Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone To Pursue Something Important.
Many times you will feel uncomfortable in implementing a needed change in technology, people, mission, competing, etc. For the company and you to grow personally, you sometimes have to step out of your comfort zone.
★ Tip #14. Have passion for your business.
Work should be fun. Your passion will help you overcome difficult moments and persuade people to work for you and want to do business with you. Passion can't be taught. When it wanes, as it surely will in difficult times, take some quiet time. Whether it be an hour or a week, take inventory of all the reasons you started the business and why you like being your own boss. That should renew your passion.