There are many different skills required to set up and run a successful new business and not all of them are obvious. With so many things to think about when starting out in business, it can be very confusing and difficult to know where to start.
Most people think of business skills as things like bookkeeping and accounting, or sales and marketing, however, with a new business it’s often a mistake to try to do all things by yourself and the most important business skill of all is learning to delegate to tasks to others.
Handing off skilled professional areas like sales and accounting, to experts in those areas, will give you time to focus on the important aspects of running your business and doing what you do best.
We asked the team of Crunch, an online accountants service and they gave us a list of key skills which all young entrepreneurs should have to be successful:
Good communication skills
Good communication is the foundation to any business success – you need to be able to explain and describe your business purpose to others; you need to be able to talk confidently to clients and staff; your business communication all needs to be clear and engaging.
Without good communication across the board, your business is certain to flounder – this is the key staple skill which all young entrepreneurs need to have. How to communicate with all kinds of people from all walks of life to spend some time looking at how the big league business tycoons do it. Watch videos of them giving speeches to see how they talk and their body language.
Personal branding skills
Personal branding is one of the key new skills which young entrepreneurs really need to understand in this day and age. With more startups and freelancers than ever before, customers are looking for an authentic personality behind the business and are moving away from faceless corporations. You need to understand how your personal presentation on your website, through networking, social media channels etc.. will have an impact on your business. It’s also an important skill to know how to manage your online reputation as part of that process.
The strategy is a key part of any business – you can’t just cross your fingers and hope for the best. Business planning and strategizing are key skills which all young entrepreneurs need to learn. It’s not good enough just to have a great idea or a great product – you need the skills to work out goals, a plan of action and an approach to turn it all into a viable profitable business.
When setting up a new business there can be a temptation to copy the styles of other successful corporations or to pretend to be a much larger organization than you are to look impressive. But what customers really want is an authentic business experience.
They want to know who you are and to know that you are honest and trustworthy, so it’s important to learn the skills of authenticity when it comes to developing your personal brand and practicing good communication – these three all go hand in hand.
Your tone of voice and brand approach need to show your customers that you care, that you are genuine and that you want to help and add value to their lives so it’s important to make sure you do that, and that you do it consistently.
The old saying “It’s not what you know but who you know” still rings true in today’s modern business world and building up a network of contacts is a vital aspect for any successful new startup.
As a young entrepreneur, it’s important to learn how to network effectively, building relationships with other people which will last, rather than launching straight in and trying to sell someone your product. People don’t like being sold to but they do like to buy from people they already know and trust.
So learning how to build meaningful connections and where to network are crucial skills which any new entrepreneur needs to master to get their business on the map.
This is closely linked with time management as another key skill because so many new and young entrepreneurs try to do far too much and end up succumbing to burn out. It’s important to manage your time and delegate where you can, to avoid becoming overloaded and overwhelmed with work.
You need to have the skills to recognize when stress starts to build up and to know when to take time out for yourself to relax and recharge. You are your business so working yourself into the ground is not going to help you or your company.
How to cope with failure
Learning from your mistakes is probably the biggest skill for all young entrepreneurs to learn. If problems and failures happen its important to have the skill to learn from the experience, understand why it happened and what you can do differently next time.
Learning from failure, not seeing it as the end of the world, and being able to pick yourself up and start over again in a different way is one of the hardest but most essential skills for any young entrepreneur. It’s vital to be flexible in the world of business if your idea doesn’t go to plan.