The 10 Steps To Becoming A Successful Entrepreneur Every Business Owner Needs To Know

That word entrepreneur is thrown around a lot these days. Some people immediately identify with it and others shy away from the term completely.

Call yourself an entrepreneur or a business owner or, consultant or, Solopreneur or, Restaurateur, Accountant, Lawyer, self-employed etc. Whatever you identify as. Thing is, if you are responsible for your own earnings. If you have your own business of any kind (even if it’s a start up) Then technically you really are an entrepreneur.

An entrepreneur is described as a person who sets up a business or businesses or takes on financial risks in the hope of profit. That’s you right? So own the term.

By seeing yourself as an entrepreneur, it opens up an entirely new mindset for you. You’ll be more daring. You’ll take on challenges. You’ll approach life with a new-found confidence. You’ll be more determined to succeed. All of this exactly what you will need to navigate the business owning world.

To help you on your journey, we thought we’d help you with the 10 steps to becoming a successful entrepreneur.

Entrepreneur success

1. Choose a business idea that works with your passions

This sounds obvious but we have seen many people set up a business to chase money. That’s all they want. And while yes money is important. You generally won’t have the success you would have achieved if you had created a business from something you are passionate about. Think about it. When you are in your element, you are positive, fearless, energetic, happy and a joy to be around.

When you are doing something your don’t enjoy then you are lacklustre, depressed, resentful and you don’t want to put any effort in. You might be disciplined for a little while. But in time you’ll hate going to work. And it will feel like a lot of work. (we call this step 1)

2. Learn how to start a business and save yourself from pain

I have a great idea, go. That seems to be a common thing we see. The entrepreneur loves their idea and is completely sure that the rest of the world will love it too. So they just jump in headfirst. Sometimes it works out. Mostly it doesn’t. The real skill in owning a business is knowing how to run a business. For the most part we find that you are all pretty good when it comes to your product or service. We find the holes in the business skills side of things. So we urge you, educate yourself. Understand the different steps to starting a business properly. (We say there are 14 steps) Do this early on and you will save yourself a lot of pain, thousands of pounds and thousands of hours. Only once you have these skills will you have a significantly better chance of creating a successful business.

3. Build a business plan that is realistic and achievable

We’ve written quite a few articles on this subject. Our advice is you don’t write a traditional plan (See our business plan article here).

Keep it simple. Get clear on your goals. Then break it down into smaller goals with deadlines. Build a short term plan to achieve it. Go action it, review it and then repeat the process. Simple and easy.

4. Learn how to attract customers that love what you do

By far the biggest complaint we get from business owners is that they don’t have enough customers and they don’t have any consistency in their sales. It is vital that you get inside their head. You know where to find them. You must learn how to talk to them and you must learn how to sell to them without being pushy. (step 7,8 & 9)

5. Work with other Entrepreneurs

Support from people who know what it is like is healthiest thing an entrepreneur can so. You’ll feel more human. Your friends and partner don’t really understand (unless they too are an entrepreneur). If you want to make a million pounds then mix with people who have already done it. Find other business owners to talk to. They will help you. They will listen to you. They will advise you. And most importantly, you will not feel alone. And you’re not alone. 600,000 people on average start their own business in the UK every year.

6. Allow your passions to sell for you

Most of us hate to sell. We hate being sold to. We just feel yucky and not ourselves. A handy tip for you. If you listen to point 1 above then you won’t have this problem. Remember, when you are passionate you are energetic. And you talk about it a lot. And because you are so animated about it, it is infectious and other people can’t wait to hear more. This is selling without selling. All you have to do is be yourself and tell people why you love what you do. They’ll be the ones asking you for more information.

7. Learn how to build business processes that breed success

Another big problem we see is that people are scattered. Or they are so used to doing something one way that they find it hard to change. The technology that is around today is amazing. Use it the right way across your entire business and everything will become easy. Map out your processes. Get rid of duplication. Get rid of manual work. Get rid of the process entirely if you can. Remember this. 3 steps to the next phase. If you can implement this then you’re on the right track (step 2).

8. Believe you are an entrepreneur

You are what you believe you are. A belief is just a series of thoughts that you think over and over. You think them so often that they become a belief. And then funnily we often forget what we had been thinking in order to create that belief. The point is, we create our beliefs. It also means we can change our beliefs. So how do we do that? Well keeping it simple. We give ourselves a new identity. So we call ourselves and entrepreneur. What is an entrepreneur? Brave, clever, a problem solver, tenacious, tough, a leader, determined, someone who helps others. So by calling yourself an entrepreneur then you start to take on these traits. You start to take more risks, you are braver, you find new solutions etc. In time you do change and you will be more of an entrepreneur then you ever thought possible (step 3).

9. Build balance into your business life

All work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy. It also makes him tired, irritable, angry and less able to make good decisions. Remember, you started your own business because you wanted control. You wanted balance. Spend time every day with your family, your children, on your hobbies. Take time off. Get good sleep. Eat well. Drink lots of water. You’ve heard it thousands of time. The application of the knowledge is what makes the difference.

10. Get back up when your business idea knocks you over

You ever heard the term, over night success? Well its rubbish. The newest 16 year old pop star might look like an overnight success. But they’d been signing and performing since they were 4. They’ve had coaches. They’ve had a team helping them. They’ve had advisors, managers etc. There is no such thing as overnight. You just don’t see the work that went on in the background.

So if you’re first attempt didn’t go as planned. Get back up and go from a different angle. If a client falls through, they were going to be a pain anyway. Get another one. If money is low, get some sales or an investor who can generate sales. If the economy fails, research where the money is flowing and change your business to work for that. In the US some start up accelerators will only accept you if you’ve failed at least 3 times. Those are ones that get back up. They are the Steve Jobs and Bill Gates of the future. Everyone fails. Everyone has knockbacks. Everyone has bad days. You’re not special in that regards. Get back up.

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About The Author

how to start a business - ray lavery

Ray Lavery

Having started her first business at 16 and now with over 20 years experience in senior leadership and director positions. Ray has also started and grown several businesses to multiple 6 and 7 figure heights. Through multiple government back business support programmes and through her own consultancy work Ray has helped over fifteen thousand businesses scale to the heights they wanted.