ABE CEO, Gareth Robinson, has many years’ experience as a Chief Executive and a Managing Director. Here, he shares his thoughts on some of the steps you need to take to start and grow a highly successful enterprise.
1. Do some soul-searching
Spend some time reflecting on your beliefs, your passions, your intentions for your new venture, and what your ideal company would look like.
2. Pick the right type of business and do your research
Before starting a new venture consider not only the business itself, but the characteristics of the industry you're selecting. Evaluate the financials carefully - how much you stand to earn, and how other businesses in the sector are faring - before you make up your mind.
3. Figure out how much money you'll need
Make sure you do not invest more than you can personally afford. Decide how much money you need to survive no matter what goes wrong? Also, don’t let your business fail through under investment. You need to assess the capital you should have right from the start.
4. Hire the right people
"Business is like sports: the best team usually wins” so don’t think you have to do everything yourself. Hire people you can rely on, whose skills will complement your own and bring a greater pool of talent to the business.
5. Create a winning culture
"Culture is a living organism that requires constant monitoring and shaping." Make sure the culture of your organisation encourages innovation and is flexible enough to adapt to changing times.
6. Learn empathy
The ability to empathise with others doesn't just make you a better person, it also makes you better at business.
7. Find the metrics that matter most
Spend some time thinking through what success really looks like, and which numbers you need to move to really be successful.
8. Use incentives
Incentives are powerful ways to encourage the behaviour you want from all stakeholders, from employees to customers to suppliers.
9. Experiment in stages
Every industry, and every business, faces constant change, and you will need to keep changing if you want sustained success. DON’T BE AFRAID TO MAKE MISTAKES.
10. Keep your eye on the future
Running a successful company is a day-to-day challenge. It can be easy to lose sight of the long term, so make sure you have the time and mental space to think about where your business - and you - are heading.
A well-designed business qualification will give you the practical skills and know-how to start and run a business and get ahead in your career. Lots of ABE graduates are now running their own businesses. If you are one of them, share your thoughts.