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Do you have the skills of an entrepreneur? You need entrepreneurial skills if running a business is your goal. Without them, your company might not be able to survive, especially in a competitive niche.
Some of these skills can be natural but whether natural or not, you must develop them. The most prosperous people develop their skills. That is the main reason they achieve their objectives. But what specific skills do you need?
Well, there’s plenty and mastering them is an ongoing process. There’s a lot to learn and I’m still refining these skills myself. But you’ll grow as a person when you begin to master all the following skills of an entrepreneur.
1. Financial Management
Having financial management skills is a must. Going into business without any money management know-how is dangerous. Do you have a record of where your money goes every month? Is there more money coming in than going out? These are some of the questions you should answer each month.
Aside from managing money, you should be capable of raising funds too. You may need to approach several investors if you’re planning to expand your business. This may involve preparing a proposal or presentation to convince investors. One thing that all competent investors look for is how you manage money (or cash flow).
Practice the basics to become good with finance. Spend less than you make, save money, and reinvest excess income back into your business.
2. Time Management
You need to know the periods of the day or week when you are most productive. You also need to know how to delegate, so try not to do everything by yourself. Learn to take advantage of productivity tools. They can help you with the day-to-day operations of your business.
Mastering time requires that you schedule tasks but let go of absolutes. For example, let’s assume that you scheduled the creation of your podcast episode between 5 PM and 6 PM. But your business meeting took an extra hour to conclude.
In this situation, some people may forget about creating the podcast episode altogether. However, it’s better to still complete the task at a later time that day. That is what it means to let go of absolutes. Maintain a flexible schedule.
Once you decide to start a business, you’ll need all the help you can get. This may mean seeking the help of like-minded friends or networking with business-minded people. You’ll also need to stay updated on the latest trends and be aware of the competition.
All are possible if networking is part of your entrepreneurial skill set. You can begin improving your networking skills by using social media to reach out to people. LinkedIn and Twitter are good platforms for networking with like-minded folks.
Use Twitter’s profile notification feature to alert you whenever someone you want to collaborate with tweets. This way, you can join the conversation.
4. Hiring and Managing People
One of the keys to a successful business is hiring the right people. To do this, you need to be very good at identifying the potential skills and weaknesses of a person. It also involves creating a positive business culture where everyone contributes.
People management is another skill that you need to have. This means developing, encouraging, and motivating your staff. Most skills are learnable but you can’t teach someone how to listen. So listening ability should be a requirement.
Consider reading books on the topics of business management. That should improve your hiring and people management skills.
5. Training Skills
Once you have put together a group of the best people you can find, you’ll need to focus on training. This will involve teaching, equipping and evaluating your staff. Learn to be patient and empower people you work with to make decisions. This is how you become good at training others.
6. Communication Skills
You need to communicate with people in a clear and effective way. This is very important. For example, You need good communication skills if you want to get everyone on board the company mission and vision. Or setting ground rules and policies that everyone can follow.
Furthermore, good communication can help you make the right friends.
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. – Jim Rohn
You can improve the odds you’ll succeed by befriending people that share the same mindset. Find individuals that have committed to growth. You’ll grow and learn from each other.
7. Internet Skills
A strong online presence is necessary in today’s Internet-driven world. Regardless of the business size, never underestimate the Internet as a marketing tool. You can start by setting up a website where people can browse and buy your products.
You should consider creating social media accounts that may drive referral traffic. Also, learning about the basics of SEO can do wonders for your business. Aside from all that, you should know how to navigate the web and find things fast.
Nothing is permanent in the business world; big changes can take place overnight. This is why you’ll need to develop the ability to look into the future. Sort of like a crystal ball.
This involves spotting new trends and seeing how you can apply them to your business. It also means being aware of the market situation in your area and knowing about the general economy.
9. Stress Management
If you are planning to stay in business for the long haul, then you’ll need to have good stress management skills. Stress is a given but what matters is how you deal with it. Will you allow stress to frustrate your efforts and dampen your spirit? Or will you face it head-on, do what is necessary and keep going?
The latter leads to personal development and growth.
10. Mindset Conditioning
In business, you will go through ups and downs. You might even reach a point where you’ll think you failed. But failure is a reality that many entrepreneurs before you have experienced. What’s important is what you do afterward.
Will you give up altogether or learn from your failure and try again? Attitude is everything! Learn to condition your mind to always have a positive outlook, even when things don’t go your way. Plus don’t be afraid to do what is necessary.
The pain will come but it always subsides. From managing rejections to anxiety to burnouts and more, you have to be tough. Your determination should be so strong that you can find a way to spring back from anything life throws at you.
You have to start practicing resilience to build it. Resilience, like many entrepreneurial skills I’ve shared in this article, needs nurturing.
Practice moving forward whenever you feel like giving up. Continue on your path regardless of the difficulties ahead. This is hard to do but the outcome is stronger resilience and growth.
High-level of impatience is problematic. A little impatience isn’t a bad thing when it makes sense, though it rarely ever does.
A lack of patience can destroy dreams before they take off. Successful entrepreneurs like Jeff Bezos didn’t get there overnight. It took years for Amazon to become one of the largest eCommerce companies in the world.
As you work on your business, understand that it takes time to build great things. Each day, you’re adding more equity to your company as its built.
Try the following to build up your patience.
- Be purposeful by making patience a goal each day. Take a bit more time to think about the situations you encounter daily.
- Slow down a little. Don’t try to get everything done in a hurry.
- Practice delaying gratification. For example, deciding not to cut corners even if you could.
- Think before you speak. Try counting to two or three seconds in your head before saying anything.
Patience almost always results in better decisions.
You need to be courageous whenever you feel fear such as when emailing or cold calling prospects. Most of the things you do as an entrepreneur will need courage.
Courage and fear often occur at the same time. Usually, you’ll feel the fear before courage takes over. Courage is keeping the faith strong even when things aren’t going as expected. It is believing that you can make it happen even when the naysayers get loud.
But courage can be dangerous if it isn’t managed. For example, leaving your job to start a business without a plan for income is reckless.
The easiest way to build courage is to feel the fear and do it anyway. Every time you become afraid to do something important, do it regardless of the fear. The more you do this, the easier it becomes to move forward despite the fear.
14. Branding Skills
Learn how to brand. Branding is the process of making a company more recognizable and distinguishable. A lot goes into branding. Entrepreneurs must know how to create branding strategies.
You can find plenty of information online to learn about branding. But the fastest way is to buy a course from reputable eLearning platforms like Udemy. You can learn almost anything there.
Sales is a top skill that entrepreneurs need. But some people consider selling a bad thing. The truth is that most of us sell daily without knowing. For instance, convincing a friend to go out with you, persuading your boss to move forward, and so on. All that is selling.
You’ll need to practice being comfortable with selling. Try more things like email outreach, cold calling, design presentations, and others. The more you try to generate new business opportunities, the easier it becomes to sell.
Furthermore, selling is beneficial to you and the prospect. People need to be aware of the problems they have and solve them. Even if someone is aware of an issue, quite often, all they need is a friendly push to move them forward.
Curiosity is an important entrepreneurial skill. It’s how you discover new issues and insights that can grow your enterprise. For example, curiosity can lead to discovering potential market opportunities and breakthrough innovations.
Practice being curious by exploring different things such as new implementation approaches. Try more things that are outside your comfort zone.
17. Strategic Thinking
Learn to deconstruct problems and reveal growth opportunities. You’ll encounter many difficult situations as an entrepreneur. Maintain the mindset that nothing is set in stone and there’s always a way to overcome obstacles. This will help you think of solutions to problems.
You can develop or improve strategic thinking in the following ways.
- Be observative and keep up with trends. For example, I often seek out verifiable stats that apply to my industry as a way of practicing.
- Think of everything you learn. Do you need alternative info? Do you have questions that need answering? Don’t take information without assessing it.
- Embrace healthy conflict. Not all conflict is bad. Stay away from the downright stupid drama but it’s ok to have healthy disagreements that can lead to growth. Pick your battles.
- Make time to think about problems or situations. Giving yourself a day to think about a specific issue can improve your decision.
18. Raising Money
The ability to raise money is an important entrepreneurial skill. But you shouldn’t seek funds from investors or banks unless you must do so. Debt can destroy your dreams if you let it. Still, you have to know how to raise money.
If you need funding, here’s how to go about it.
- First, find people or organizations that can lend you money.
- Second, develop a credible case for funding.
- Third, repeat the process and tweak things as you go.
Do all that enough times and you’ll become a pro at acquiring funds.
19. Being Productive
Working long hours doesn’t always translate to high productivity. As an entrepreneur, you need to understand your productivity patterns. No one-way works for everyone. For example, my peak energy times are in the morning and evening. So I get the most important tasks done during those hours.
To become more productive, understand what works for you. Then start scheduling tasks during those peak energy hours.
Commit to Continuous Learning to Refine Your Entrepreneurial Skills
These entrepreneurial skills are some of the things you need to succeed in business. If you don’t have all yet, don’t worry, because developing the skills of an entrepreneur takes time. Commit yourself to continuous learning to refine your skills and grow. Let this list be your guide as you strive to reach your business goals.19 Skills That Successful #Entrepreneurs HaveClick To Tweet
Do you have something to add? Let us know in the comments below.