10 years - 10 thoughts on survival
One day you might want to run your own business. A few words of warning. Be careful. It’s not for everyone.
When NRG turned 10 in March 2015, I reflected on why we have been able to survive as a small business for 10 years.
I’ve had to throw quite a few logs on the fire to keep the flames burning for 10 years. I realised a few years ago that if you leave the fire alone for too long it will burn out quite quickly.
Here are my 10 thoughts on how to survive for 10 years in business.
- Know who you want as your customer
- Be different to stand out from the crowd
- Trust your instincts
- Build a great support team
- Set goals and remain focused on achieving those goals
- Keep improving – Don’t get bitter, get better
- Stay in touch with your customers
- Have a plan for attracting new customers
- Switch off from work – Get a life
- Cash flow is king
All of the above points are very important. If you ever consider starting your own business I would look very closely at the list above.
In my opinion, if you lack the understanding, skills, expertise or desire in any of the above points you will struggle to get past the 3 year mark in business.
I have seen so many people attempt to build businesses that on paper look good. Unfortunately, over time their energy and enthusiasm, much like a kite, without an owner on a windy day, just drifts away.
If you can find the balance between working like an accountant and thinking like an artist then you might just be half a chance to make it in business. The accountant knows that in reality a business is just about numbers. Are you making more than you are spending? If you aren’t, you will be in a lot of trouble, sooner rather than later.
The successful artist knows that you have to constantly create and trust your instincts. You must listen to your creative side and be brave. Never be scared of being judged. Like most successful artists, Pablo Picasso spent most of his time, painting and sculpting.
Apart from womanising, that’s pretty much all he did.
What’s that sound you hear? That’s me starting the car. I’m off to buy some firewood. I don’t want these flames to burn out.