fbpx

Productivity / Measuring success

Five lessons learnt from 10 years in business

This year marks 10 years since I established my business. After experiencing the highs and lows, I like to think that I’m wiser and have small business lessons to share.

By

Lesson 1. Set goals

Setting and working toward goals will enable you to measure your progress. If you’re clear about what goals you want to achieve, you’re more likely to achieve them.

Lesson 2. Be flexible

Even though it’s important to set goals, not everything will go as planned, and that may be a good thing.

The business world of the 21st century is a rapidly changing environment, and as soloists we have the potential to adapt to those changes much more quickly than large corporations.

Looking back over the years, I’m pleased that I’ve been able to adapt to the changing needs of my clients. It’s opened the door to new opportunities, and my business is better for it.

"As soloists it’s easy to become caught up in the business. It’s important to enjoy the process, to celebrate the small wins."

Lesson 3. Listen to your clients

Listening to my clients has been an important part of developing programs for them. My clients have given me insights into what works best for them, which has helped me develop products and services that have added value to their work.

Want more articles like this? Check out the measuring success section.

Lesson 4. Work smarter

As a soloist there have been times when I’ve felt overwhelmed by the number of tasks I’ve needed to complete during a working day.

As time progressed and my knowledge of available resources increased, I realised that those frustrations were avoidable.  Two major ways to work smarter  have been to learn from others and to outsource where possible.

Learning from others is easy to do. You can find inspiration through:

  • Online forums. People can often answer questions about various aspects of your business.
  • Social media connections. People are always keen to share their knowledge.
  • Local networking events. These can be an opportunity to find out how other businesses operate and how they overcome common hurdles.
  • Online articles. There is an abundance of articles on just about any aspect of business.

Outsourcing

A couple of years ago I decided it was time to outsource some tasks, so I ventured into the world of the virtual assistant, and I haven’t looked back.

Non-essential tasks can free up time so that you can focus on the core aspects of your business.

Lesson 5. Enjoy the moment

As soloists it’s easy to become caught up in the business. It’s important to enjoy the process, to celebrate the small wins – whether they be landing a new client, finishing a project or just getting to the end of a busy week. Remember to share these wins with others.

When I began my business I embarked on a journey of learning. It has taken me down paths that have allowed me to grow, and in turn added value to my clients’ experiences. It’s been an extraordinary 10 years. I’m looking forward to what the next 10 years will bring.

Whether you’ve been in business for 10 years or 10 minutes, what small business lessons have you learnt?

Maria Pantalone

works with individuals and teams in developing their business communication skills. Her company, Infinite Growth, provides training in presentation skills, business writing and leadership development. Armed with these skills, there is nothing a business person cannot achieve.

Comments

126,906 people use Flying Solo to help them create a business with life. Do you?

Connect with Flying Solo

Explore the benefits of membership