When you’re thinking of starting a small business, you might feel daunted by just how much there is to do. From financial administration to staff hiring and product management, a small business takes up a huge amount of your time and mental resources. With that in mind, it’s a good idea to make the process of starting a small business as painless and straightforward as possible.
That’s where we come in. We’ve devised a series of tips for you to take you through some of the essential basics of starting your venture. Whether it’s getting enough money together, hiring the right people, or making sure your branding is on point, refer to this checklist whenever you need to know whether you’re on the right track. Without further ado, here are our tips and tricks for starting a small business.
Improve Your Emotional Intelligence
You might not think emotional intelligence is a crucial skill for starting a small business, but if you’re not there when it comes to listening to staff and customers then you’ll struggle. Consider enlisting the services of an emotional intelligence coaching service like the one at this link: https://www.eqworks.co.uk/. There, you’ll find everything you need to become a better communicator.
You can also improve your emotional intelligence by decorating your personal office (or workspace) with reminders of your nearest and dearest. They’ll ground you during difficult moments and remind you why you’re doing this. Plenty of services offer great family photography; Venture Photography is one such option. Having photos around your office can really help to make you a better business owner.
Get Your Capital Together
Starting a small business without a significant capital investment is very difficult indeed. There are lots of hidden costs associated with starting a business; paying staff, buying products, and overheads are all things you’ll need to consider as a business owner. You shouldn’t launch your venture without first making sure you have funds to fall back on.
In addition, when you’re a business owner, you might find yourself in times of financial trouble. Sometimes the market simply doesn’t go as you want it to, while other problems might include unexpected shortfalls because of staff or failing products. In those times, having absolutely no backup funding is a surefire way for your business to fail. Try to make sure you have a safety cushion in the bank.
Hire The Right Staff
It’s worth taking time to make sure that the folks you’re hiring to work for your business are the right people. Maybe you’re not actually ready to start hiring yet, but if that’s the case, then you should still keep this tip in mind. It’s easy to think “I just need to fill the ranks”, but in reality, doing this will mean that when crunch time comes you won’t have the right people at your back.
There are lots of ways you can make sure the right staff hires are coming your way. First and foremost is the interview process. Don’t skimp on important questions through laziness. Next, make sure to consult your existing staff and see if they think your new hire is good. Conduct regular performance reviews and check in with the new staff member regularly to see what their opinion is.
Cultivate A Good Atmosphere
Your customers will notice the atmosphere you cultivate in your business, even if you don’t invite them to the actual office or place where you work. This doesn’t just mean you should always stay positive, although that’s certainly important. It’s also crucial to keep your staff motivated and their eyes on the prize. Your business mission is the most important thing about your venture, so constantly reinforce it.
If the atmosphere does start to turn sour – even if you’re the only employee at your business – you can still take action. The first thing you need to do is acknowledge it. Don’t simply let it fester; if employees have concerns, let them be heard. Hold regular seminars to ask people what they think can be done. If it’s a financial issue, try to reassure your employees (but don’t be dishonest).
Listen To Social Media
When a buzz starts to develop around your company on social media (as it will if your strategy is sound), it’s important to keep your ear to the ground. Always pay attention to what people are actually saying about you. Whether it’s positive or negative, it pays to stay abreast of opinion so you can appropriately respond. If it’s negative, you can begin a campaign to restore your reputation.
That means your social media manager – even if that’s you – needs to be au fait with all the major social media platforms. It’s no good having a hole in your strategy because your manager doesn’t understand how to use Instagram effectively. Check in with your social media staff and make sure they’re doing their job properly, but also that they know what their job actually is.
Create A Wikipedia Page
You’d be amazed how much clout a Wikipedia page can give you. Many journalists won’t even bother to look you up if you’re not on Wikipedia; you could put this down to laziness, but it’s also because they don’t think you’re enough of a cultural presence to remark upon. Wikipedia gives you prestige, even if its reputation has occasionally suffered over the years.
Creating a Wikipedia page is one thing, but actually having it survive the intensive review process is quite another. Write very carefully; use neutral language and don’t talk your company up. Make sure everything that’s on the page is factual and verifiable, because that’s the first place the Wikipedia reviewer will look. It’s not easy, but making a Wikipedia page is a surprisingly effective tool for helping you stand out.