Entrepreneurship has become the new American dream — small businesses, like Harmonic Media, are living proof. Having a vision and the determination to bring it to life is the first step. At the same time, one must not be naive to the fact that challenges will inevitably arise. But don’t let that deter you.
We can tell you with 100 percent certainty, that being your own boss and pursuing your passion is most definitely worth it! We’ve gained a lot of insight over the years, and continue to learn new things on a regular basis. During the month of February, it seemed fitting to share the knowledge of business ownership advice we LOVE. We hope you find it to be as valuable as we have.
“I don’t believe in luck, I believe in preparation.”
- Bobby Knight
Possessing that entrepreneurial spirit is a great thing, but it must be paired with a well-thought-out business plan. This is not one of those instances where you want to throw caution to the wind. Research has supported the idea that thinking ahead pays off. In fact, one study found companies that plan grow at a rate 30 percent faster than those that don’t. (articles.bplan)
"Spend time upfront to invest in systems and processes to make long-term growth sustainable."
- Jeff Platt
This quote is related to the former one about having a plan. It takes things one step further but putting that plan into action. A successful business owner understands that you have to spend wisely at the start to see a greater ROI (return on investment) in the end. When sorting out your finances, it is crucial to consider the short- and long-term benefits. Streamlining processes is a smart way to invest in the growth of your business.
“Focus and simplicity — once you get there, you can move mountains.”
- Steve Jobs
One of the biggest mistakes business owners make is trying to do too much. Authenticity is a major attraction to consumers nowadays. So don’t fall for that imposter syndrome. If you try to be too many things to too many people, you’ll end up being nothing to everyone. Stay true to yourself, choose a specific product or service, and own the shit out of it. This is how a brand reputation is built.
“There is no finish line. There are only mile markers.”
As an entrepreneur, it is crucial to create goals that are within reach. If you have lofty expectations, you are inevitably setting yourself up for failure. Choose to focus on small victories and watch as they begin to add up. Just remember that every time you cross an achievement off your business owner wish list to put a new one in its place. Constant forward progress is key.
“Find a great mentor, someone who has already been through the many challenges of being an entrepreneur.”
- Jodi Levine
Don’t let your pride get the best of you. There is no such thing as a person who knows it all, especially when it comes to business ownership. If there is someone who has had success navigating the entrepreneurial landscape who is willing to impart wisdom — take it. Just be sure it is someone you trust and who you believe has your best interest at heart. Learning from other peoples’ mistakes so you can avoid making them yourself is priceless.
“You don't build a business, you build people, then people build the business.”
- Zig Ziglar
Many business owners are so focused on the bottom line that they lose sight of a top priority: the people make the place. Taking the time to find the right people who believe in the mission of your brand is crucial to the success of your company. It is wise to invest in your employees and create a culture that makes them want to stay.
“Become the kind of leader that people would follow voluntarily, even if you had no title or position.”
- Brian Tracy
The most effective way to be a leader is to prioritize inspiration over motivation. Instead of telling people what to do, show them through your own actions. Provide support and encouragement that makes your team members know they are valued. Encourage opportunities for collaboration and foster fun amidst productivity. At the end of the day, aim to be someone you would want to work for.
"A small business is an amazing way to serve and leave an impact on the world you live in.”
- Nicole Snow
Never underestimate your ability to make a positive difference. There will always be haters to ignore and challenges to overcome, but don’t let any of it stop you from fulfilling your dream. Making an impact is not reserved for Fortune 500 companies. It is possible for small businesses to have a big impact. Let yours be next.
Find Harmony Here
At Harmonic Media, we have mastered the art of bringing various components together harmoniously. Taking all of these words of wisdom to heart, we continue to find ways to better ourselves and our work.