Here are some things you should keep in mind when starting your own business, and the early, crucial years of running it.

1. Never, ever lose sight of why you are doing it

There are strong emotions that motivate you into starting your own business. Whether it’s spending more time with family, or wanting to find something more rewarding and fulfilling.

The key is to never lose sight of these things. It should remain your compass that guides you and your decisions. Share your vision with close ones and together remember what drove you in the first place.

2. Build a strong network

Running a business can be a lonely affair. Sometimes you can feel quite isolated – with no one to bounce ideas off or share challenges with.

We are social and emotional beings. Have a group of people you can call on for support, who share your values and who you can confide in.

3. Be visible

There is no substitute for getting out there and meeting people on a regular basis. Staying front of mind with people so that they will think of you when an opportunity arises.

Networking is an essential part of the job. We don’t have the big marketing bucks of the big companies, so we rely on a network of people to be our ‘extended sales team’.

4. Be authentic

Don’t try to be something you are not. For one, it will stress you out. For two, people will see right through it. Stay true to yourself and be yourself.

Be authentic and people will relate to you better. In turn, it will be easier to build rapport and develop relationships.

5. Play to your strengths

Don’t pretend you can do everything and avoid the temptation to try.

Recognise the work you struggle with or don’t like, then delegate it to someone who loves doing it and is great at it.

It’s important to free yourself up to play to your own strengths. Then you can enjoy it more and be more effective.

6. Give and you shall receive

Once you start looking for ways to actively help people, you’ll be amazed at how interconnected everything seems to be.

While networking, it is easy to focus on what you’re going to say, rather than listen to the other person. Stop and listen. Ask yourself ‘how can I help this person?’ ‘Who can I introduce them to?’ After all, that is what we are hoping they will be doing when we are speaking, right?

7. Stay positive

‘Smile and the whole world smiles with you.’

It’s so true. Yes, some mornings you wake up not feeling great about stuff.

Remember, every day brings a new opportunity. Embrace it. Dust yourself down, get out there and smile. It sure makes for a better day.


If you need help and advice about setting up your own business, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local Business Doctor here