Starting a business is hard. Making your business a success is even harder. If you think that a brilliant idea coupled with a sound business plan is enough, think again. There will always be moments of uncertainties. Different challenges will arise on a daily basis like hiring the right people, branding, market positioning, customer care, money management and even personal fatigue.
I know of many people who tried to put up businesses and failed. They tried multiple times but still to no avail. There are a few who persisted until they have succeeded. I’ve asked one of them for tips on how to succeed in doing business, and this is what he had to say:
1. Establish a Good Name
A good name is more than just a good business name. It is establishing a good brand. A brand pertains to the company’s reputation. It is the sum total of how others see and perceive your business. It is the how you deal with your customers and suppliers. It is how you build credibility as far as payables and credit are concern. It is how you handle your after sales service. Most importantly, it is about the quality of your product or service. The key here is trust. People should trust your brand. That trust in turn will convert to not just loyal customers but to new customers as well.
2. Customer is Not Always Right
The customer is always right. Occasionally however, you will encounter customers who have their own emotional biases on certain things. If you sense a problem, a complaint or a disagreement, it is your duty as a business owner to guide your customers. Explain your thoughts in an amicable way. Give proper explanation on your products or service details. Do a demonstration if necessary.
Remember that everyone has their own forte. You are the expert in your craft. Help the customer understand the pros and cons of the situation. Explain clearly why you think a specific product or service is the one that best suits their preferences. Make them understand the logic behind it.
3. Do Something that you Love Doing
Running a business is always a challenge. There will be good days but there will also be bad days, more so during early stages. It is hard. You never know what to expect. There will be blood, sweat and tears. You will need to work until the wee hours. There will be little compensation. You might even find yourself in financial woes. Your family and friends might begin to question you. And worst, you might even end up doubting yourself.
The only thing that will keep you going is if you love what you are doing. If you enjoy what you are doing, then you will be exceptionally passionate about it. You will never get tired and will not give up on things easily. Your passion will become your key to success.
4. Learn from your Mistakes.
Mistakes are inevitable. So, don’t be scared to fail. Failure is part of success. What is important is that you keep trying. Learn from your mistakes. Analyze what went wrong and then focus on what you can do to make it right. Adopt measures on how to prevent that same mistake from happening again. It is a waste of time and energy to play the blame game. Just acknowledge that it is all a part of the learning process. Apply the lessons for the improvement of your business.
5. Work With Your People and Not Against Them
Difficult people do exist in any organization. They don’t do their work as agreed upon. They will insist on their own views or way of doing things. They won’t show up when you expect them to. Dealing with these people drastically each time will not address the problem. You will only see yourself in the exact same situation but with a different person.
The best thing to do is to equip yourself with certain skills that will help you deal with these kind of individuals. First and foremost, you need to learn to control your temper. Understand where the person is coming from. Get their perspective on things. Accept the fact that you don’t know everything. Listen to their suggestions even if you are the boss. Be always open to change. Who knows, they might have a better idea on the task at hand. If it doesn’t work, explain your side of things. Let the person understand your expectations and views on the matter. Focus on the things that you both can do going forward. What is important is that there should be mutual respect.
Credits and special thanks to Mickey Pascual for the business advice. Mickey Pascual is the owner/CEO of Mickey’s Autosound, holder of the King of Sound title in the Philippines for 3 consecutive years now. He started the business more than 20 years ago while he was still in college because of his love for car audio. He continuously gives his best to improve his craft and goes to Germany every other year for the European Mobile Media Assocation (EMMA) Judges Training. He has been invited numerous times to judge EMMA competitions worldwide.