Starting a business is hard, but managing and keeping it running over the years is the hardest. You may have gotten into business to either earn more income or to realize an idea that you had been very passionate about, but have you actually thought about how to sustain this business for the long-term?
Surely, your idea of a startup business also includes plans of transforming it into a bigger one. A good business can run for years, but a better one can be passed onto your children, children’s children, and then over to the next generation of your kin.
That though, is not as easy as merely passing over a good family recipe – keeping your business requires good skills and strategy that should become part of your daily routine (more or less):
Always look for ways to improve and upgrade.
Whether it is your product, customer service, marketing campaign, or employee relations, there are always new ways for your business to improve.
Improving your business means that you are constantly finding new ways to stay relevant and keep employees productive and efficient. It may also mean adapting to new trends and technology that could make production and business transactions easier and more secure.
Like evolution, a business that refuses to adapt or innovate will eventually die out. So keep your toes ready and be on the look-out for new ways, trends and innovations that can benefit your business.
Learning to delegate is key.
When the business is relatively young, it is normal for it to be dependent on the founder. However, the goal there is to slowly streamline all the processes to the right people so you can focus on more important things such as strengthening partnerships and expansion planning.
If your business is running for five years or more, but is still dependent on you even on the littlest details, then it is time to learn how to delegate. Don’t micro-manage everything, hire an efficient project manager to monitor your team’s output for you. If you are a small to medium-sized business owner, you can hire a virtual assistant to do clerical and research tasks for you so you can clear these tasks off your plate.
It is also good to groom someone as your heir-apparent as soon as possible. This could be a family member, a trusted business partner or a long-time employee. Bottomline is, you need to make sure that your business keeps running even if you are away, or if something bad happens to you.
Maintain a good brand image.
Maintaining a good business reputation is also important if you want to stay in the market forever. If your company is poised as a family-friendly brand, then you must stay true to that trait – not just when it comes to your products, but even when it comes to customer engagement, employee training and relationships as well.
In this digital age, know that a slight PR misstep can cause a viral outrage, so be very careful with your choice of words, imagery and customer treatment.
Consult, listen, and stay relevant.
It is good to have a business partner or consultant that you can always ask for advice and exchange ideas with. If you find it hard to keep yourself updated with the newest trends and tech advancements, then it is best to consult someone who is very knowledgeable and up to date about everything. It is also important to listen if they have major suggestions and ideas for your business to grow.
Maintain a good morning routine.
Many known leaders and CEOs such as Mark Zuckerberg, the late Steve Jobs, and even President Barack Obama maintain a morning routine that can keep them energetic and focused all throughout the day.
An active morning routine and lifestyle will help you get going with new ideas and innovation, it also makes you happier and eager to take on the rest of the day’s challenges with a clear and healthy mind.
The basics of your daily morning routine should include: Waking up early (no oversleeping), having a good 30 minute to 1 hour exercise, a hearty breakfast, and at least 30 minutes of meditation or browsing through the latest news, work emails, and going over the day’s plan or itinerary.
These are called ‘open secrets’ because most entrepreneurs already know these, but due to constant work and worries, many also forget about it. Overworking yourself for the business is unhealthy for you – and for the company as well. Yes, it may function well under your watchful eye, but if you really want to leave it as a legacy, you need to ensure that it could still continue even years after your retirement.
Gemma Reeves is a seasoned writer who enjoys creating helpful articles and interesting stories. She has worked with several clients across different industries such as advertising, online marketing, technology, healthcare, family matters, and more. She is also an aspiring entrepreneur who is engaged in assisting other aspiring entrepreneurs in finding the best office space for their business.
Check out her company here: FindMyWorkspace