Forget The Theory – Entrepreneurs Need to Be Practical

Be practical as an entrepreneur - www.authenticedge.co.ukWhat do you think? When you first make the leap and set up your own business you had to learn all about how business worked – didn’t you? Well, if you were a perfectionist type then I expect you did. Or maybe you are someone who has to get it right, and get everything lined up before you start? So you delay because everything isn’t quite right.

You don’t have business cards, and your website isn’t right, oh and you don’t have enough followers on Twitter yet……

Does any of this resonate?

Maybe, maybe not.

It won’t get you far…

But where does it get you if you think like that? Not far is the answer, in reality. You won’t get clients and earn money by sitting home playing with your website or perfecting your business cards. Do you even need them anyway?
At the end of the day to get going and make things happen you just have to get on with it.

Here’s the reality. There is only you, you can’t do everything. So forget what you “should” do and do what you can. Focus on the important stuff first. (And that includes knowing what the important stuff is!)

Wherever you go you will always see articles and book and websites telling you all the theory, and how you should set everything up so it is done properly and effectively.

But, being practical, as I’m sure you are being an entrepreneur, these are written for bigger businesses.

Do it your way

You have to do the best you can with what you have got, without killing yourself in the process. Knowing as I do how entrepreneurs are inclined to overwork, I believe this reminder is very important!

Whilst you need to know where you are going and have your targets and so on, you don’t need a formal business plan in the format you would for a bank. not unless you are taking out a loan anyway.

Do you think that Richard Branson had a formal business plan when he set up Virgin Records? Somehow I don’t think so. He may have had some kind of plan but I don’t think he spent thousands getting some accountant to do a fancy formal plan for him.

Work within your budget

It’s the same with all aspects of setting up and running your business. If you are on a budget, you have to work within it, which will influence the decisions you make.

As an individual you only have so much time so you have to prioritise and do what you need to do – which means what is right for you and your business, and your clients.

And because you will never have time to do it all you have to decide what won’t get done. And this is another way to get practical. Delegate the stuff that you don’t; have tie for. There will be stuff that is not urgent and needing your immediate attention, but needs doing. For many this is things like accounts, admin and maybe social media.

Get creative

And again if you’re on a budget how can you make it happen? You need to find a way that works. Obviously you can build your business and sell more to create cashflow to pay for it, but until then you need to be practical. Maybe you can swap or barter services. Be creative, channel those ideas to something useful as well as towards products and creative thinking.

Adapt to suit

There is plenty of theory out there about how to run your business, and it is based on certain assumptions that may or may not apply to you. The bottom line is the academic stuff is based on medium and large businesses, and they are very different to small business. In fact translating big business advice to a small business can be detrimental, because its not appropriate.

So whilst there is sense in it and definitely things you can learn and use for guidance, always be practical, do what suits your business and your resources. Filter out the good bits and adapt. You will know what works and what doesn’t .

Blog first published on www.authenticedge.co.uk

Set up Systems To Make Life Easier

Set up systems to make your business better - Authentic EdgeIn this blog we will have a brief look at the administrative side to your business – the back office, and probably the bit that most business owners hate the most and leave until last!

The disadvantage of doing that though, is that things accumulate, they become messy, and you never know where you are. By being well organised, and getting things cleared regularly you keep your whole business running smoothly.

There are all sorts of records that you need to keep for your business, and paperwork that you need to do. Make sure you know what has to be done and that it gets dealt with promptly and regularly.

To keep your business running smoothly the best thing to do is set up systems. That is a collection of instructions (systems) about how to do things, how to do everything you know about running your business, so that everyone in the business knows, and things are done consistently and perfectly all the time.

If you don’t think this is a good idea then take note, according to research, the key to making a business more valuable is making it LESS dependent on you the business owner… and MORE dependent on systems – so that when you eventually come to sell your business it works just as well for the buyer without you, as it ever did with you. This is also borne out by brokers who sell businesses.

Remember the word SYSTEM actually stands for Save Your Self Time, Earn yourself Money.

It is best to do your systems at the beginning if you can, it is easier and you will have more time. Also that way, your systems can grow with the business, rather than you trying to start a new way of working when you are up and running, and too busy doing the job to think about how it should be done!

(Taken From 101 Secrets of Successful Entrepreneurs – by Julia McDaid)