Running a business can stink.
You have way too many things to worry about! If you don’t pay the bills, nobody does. If you’re not making money, there’s no way to pay those bills.
Prioritizing tasks can seem nearly impossible when they’re piling up on you. And when we feel overwhelmed, many of us tend to leave these priorities up to the crisis du jour.
Plan ahead and consider your priorities before those crises emerge, and while preventing desperate situations, you’ll grow your business in ways you never imagined.
Here are 5 tips for entrepreneurs to eliminate the need for a panic button.
1. Your customers always come first.
Period. No exceptions! There’s a good reason this one tops the list. Without customers, running your business becomes a thankless burden. If you have a deadline to meet, a customer relationship to keep alive, or a problem situation to rectify, it should be top of mind.
2. Step back and mind your operations.
If there’s one thing entrepreneurs can’t stand talking about, it’s operations. When we start a business, we’re never excited about developing processes for handling expenses or delivering materials to customers in a way that makes sense to them. We’re anxious to dive in and start doing what we do best, but we’ll never get to do those things if nothing works!
It’s vital to make those boring operations a priority. Suck it up and make it happen.
3. Be a lifeline for employees.
Your employees must have someone to keep them pointed in the right direction. You’re in charge of the big picture and it’s up to you to map out their their path within it. Invest some quality time in keeping your employees informed and motivated. Don’t assume they know what to do until they’re drowning and begging for help.
4. Hire the right people.
Making the right choice is rarely quick and easy. If expanding your staff is a priority, expect it to be a lot of work. Take better care with the job posting than you do ordering your lunch. Dedicate some time and a reasonable budget to developing a smart hiring process and your company will see long-lasting returns on those investments.
Never “phone it in” during the interview process. Your people are a huge part of your brand image. The hiring process deserves as much respect as the business itself!
5. Communicate your goals.
Help your employees see where your organization is headed, and be clear about where you are in that journey. If you haven’t hired anyone yet, be sure to articulate these things for yourself. The best time to do this is often when you feel too busy to do so! Please don’t skip it. It will help guide your pivotal decisions and help your employees understand how to steer their piece of the ship.
Entrepreneurship is about disruption and change, and yes- having way too much on your plate. To stay in business, you need to make time for things like paying your vendors, organizing your files and making sure you’re driving a well-oiled machine that will get you where you need to be.