12 Habits of successful business owners and entrepreneurs

Like many other business owners, I strive to be the very best at what I do. I immerse myself in finding ways to improve my business strategies, enhance my client base and deliver a superior service. After all, my business is my livelihood as it is for millions of other small business owners. With that in mind, you may be asking yourself, "Is there something else I could be doing to enhance my business performance?"

We live in a world where we constantly learn. One of the ways we can benefit is not to be afraid to observe and ask questions, especially other small business owners. Below are 12 habits of independently owned brands and their business habits:

1) They seek out information

Successful business owners constantly seek to learn. They are on a mission to learn as much as they can and will find the time to do so, even if it means waking up 2 hours earlier or going to bed 2 hours later. They will make time to educate themselves. They study statistics, other business blogs, converse with other business owners for feedback and read professional publications. They strategise ways to improve their business.


2) They know when enough is enough

One can only do so much research and probing. There comes a time when you have to take what you have gathered and implement it. If too much information is gathered then nothing may get done. It takes time to implement new ideas and test them out. There is a lot of free information out there but not everything works for a particular brand or company. Successful business owners use trial and error to test new ideas.


3) They know when to make it happen

Once the research is completed then it's a matter of making it a reality. Whether it's a new company newsletter, adding a social media widget to their web site, a new ad campaign, a new blog post or introducing a new product. They reflect back and see what they did to improve, and how well it worked out.


4) They aren't afraid to say "No"

Sometimes saying 'yes' too much in business can be costly. Trying to accept every job or opportunity that comes your way can cost you money and cause added stress. Taking on a job because you feel like you can't say no, or accepting a project and reducing your charges in order to help cash flow can overburden you and may cause you to turn down a better or more profitable project because you are already committed. Successful business owners aren't afraid to say 'no' to things.


5) They know to avoid social media overload

Social media tools are wonderful for connecting with clients, interacting with clients, sharing something new or enabling people to find your business. However, too much time on there will not make a positive impression. Why are you so active on social media? Don't you have any work?


6) They organise themselves

If you have a clear goal in mind then organisation is going to be integral. Make a plan of attack and carry it out. If it doesn't work, then go back to the drawing board and begin again. Don't continue trying to make something work, it's not a great use of time and it may just not work for your business. Sometimes, you might even 'stumble' upon a great idea in the planning process!


7) They schedule

Everything is laid out very precisely, almost like clockwork. It's one of the secrets to a well oiled machine. Successful business owners won't make an appointment without checking their diary first. They need to see what time they have free because everything else is already scheduled in.


8) They are willing to learn

You need to be open to learning new things. Some people are afraid to admit they don't know something because they are worried they may appear stupid. Don't be afraid to ask questions, observe and learn. If people see you are willing to learn, then they will be more open to teaching you something new. People enjoy sharing their knowledge and expertise.


9) They become the facilitator

Share your passion! Tell interested people about your business, your passions and draw them in. Effective business owners will love discussing their business and what they do. If people see you are excited about your products and services, they will become interested and excited too.


10) They don't let criticism crush them

You will be criticised. Fact. People love to criticise others. Your initial reaction will be to defend yourself and lash out at the person criticising you. Criticism can be hurtful and demoralising. Successful business owners remain calm in the face of criticism and learn to take it with a pinch of salt. Take a deep breath, calm down and look closely at the criticism you're receiving. Is it constructive or deliberately hurtful? If it's the latter, accept it with grace and move on, you're representing your brand. If it's constructive then consider how you can address it and thank the person for their comments.

11) They find a balance for their prices

If you're too cheap people will wonder about the quality of your products and service. If you're too expensive they may think they're being overcharged. Customers are quick to recognise when they are being overcharged and will quickly move on if they don't feel they are getting value for their hard earned money. You must find a balance between charging what you're worth and overcharging. Successful business owners find a balance for their prices. They do this by offering great value for money in the form of an offer or promotion which draws the customer in to try the product or service. Once they are drawn in they build trust and turn that customer in a repeat customer, by building trust they are able to convert customers in to paying higher prices for a premium service.

12) They are constantly evolving

You need to be a go getter and make things happen in your business. It won't happen by itself. If you cannot lead yourself then how can you expect to lead your business?