Three skill sets all entrepreneurs should master

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It’s easy to find yourself concentrating so hard on the moving cogs in your business, that you, as the one turning them, needs attention and betterment too. Being a business owner requires you to wear a number of hats but what skill sets are 100% necessary.

1. Become a time lord

Priorities
How to have a good, productive day? Simple – have a priority. Having clear goals is a must to start your day. Knuckling down on one objective will ensure you get far more done. By predicting the ups and downs in your business, with our forecasting tools , you’ll always know where you need to be concentrating the most.

Moulding your business plan around your forecast allows you to plan ahead for obstacles and make the most of busy periods. Use this knowledge to your advantage and know what you should be focusing on and when. You can’t expect yourself to be running at full speed if you have no idea which way you should be turning.

Productivity
The dreaded area to tackle: productivity. Ever take an hour-long lunch, then realise the whole day has flown by? Conversely, you shouldn’t be head down all day. Being overwhelmed with tasks is just as bad.

Quick wins to kick-start your productivity:

  • Set realistic to do lists
  • Dedicate an hour of your Monday morning to plan your objectives for the week and the steps you need to complete to get there
  • Set time sections in your calendar, or reminders on your phone
  • Have multiple definite break times. Breaks are great refreshments and defining when they are will keep you on a steady track

Assess the urgency of tasks as well as their importance. Review your to-do list. Anything that gets marked as ‘important’ is your top priority, then ordered by urgency. If it’s not important, why is it on your to-do list? It’s destined, at that point, either for to be tucked away for later or doomed for the bin.

In order:

  • Urgent, important items (give a generous amount of time and completed at your most productive times of the day)
  • Important, non-urgent items (consider taking a day or session a week to dedicate to these items)
  • Non-important urgent items (consider:)
  • Non-urgent, unimportant items should head straight for the bin

2. Become a social-butterfly

Work hard, train hard
Investing in training for your team increases the value they can contribute back to their work. In addition, it allows you to mould, grow and promote people you trust and know, rather than
always hiring (and spending weeks teaching) new talent. More importantly, this gives your staff more satisfaction and motivation in their jobs. Your staff is a precious resource that grows and increases in value, the more you invest in it.

Exterior comms
Communication reaches outside of your company too. Communicating with your client base, much like interior communication, requires you to listen, communicate and negotiate. This could be face to face, or digitally. Either way, you need a clear plan for how you do this.

Do you have a company voice? If not, spend some time composing it, the tone, the ideals, even common words. This gives your customers a real sense of who you are and your business’ ethos.

Motivate, motivate, motivate
Motivating employees is one of the core responsibilities you have as a business owner. It shouldn’t feel like a chore, it’ll be evident to your employees if it does. Ranging from a thank you box (or Slack channel, for the more digitally savvy among you), to company event days, or investing in development programmes, this is your chance to give something back.

Employees that are happy at work are more productive and motivated, which reflects in the quality of their work. This will benefit you and your customers (which to really hammer it home, benefits you, again).

Save sinking (partner)ships
Communicating with partners can be more difficult. Negotiation can place barriers in relationships, as both parties stubbornly act with their business’ best interests in mind. Our solution? Put your purpose in the foreground. If you’re working with another business, it’s likely that you share interests and goals. Use this as your selling point. With both parties
working towards the same goal for the same reason, you’re likely to have a bigger impact.

3. Become a(n almost) know-it-all

To educate or to delegate?
Educating yourself can be very time-consuming. Depending on how you do it, it can also be costly. On one hand, you’re more likely to stick around at your company than someone you hire to fill a role.

The decision is the toss up between dedicating your own time and money, or whether resources would be better spent hiring someone already qualified. If money is a big problem, consider educating yourself or a current team member, evolving their role. Choosing another team member will stop the company depending even more heavily on your expertise, and stop you adding another hat to your collection.

If it’s a better fit, consider hiring a specialist. Whether freelance, part-time or permanent is up to you and the nature of your needs. Another option is to take on an advisor, who can educate your team and create an action plan for you to run with after they’ve finished. This is a low cost, low time consumption alternative that can train your team up on the basics.

Know your stuff
As well as industry and skill-based knowledge, you need to know your business. Our in-depth reports and meetings will provide you with all the information you need. We can monitor specific KPIs, keeping an extra close eye on the factors that are most important to your business. Financial or non-financial, we’ll take the blindfold off and keep you up to date on where you are.

Talk to any one of the team at DS Accountancy today on Cheltenham 01242 260590 | London 0207 043 2313.

 

Photo by Carl Heyerdahl on Unsplash

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