As a startup-preneur we always desire to do many things but couldn’t mange to do. But there are 5 top things every entrepreneur has to make as their routine. Initial days, may be we will wonder how to juggle all these, as we will be one man army and not having enough budget to hire. Finally end up in just handling projects that come on our way through initial known circles or purely by luck and just keep ourselves busy in delivering them on time, managing resources , going overboard and giving more than required customer support for those couple of customers, in the fear of losing them. So eventually we will stop thinking about achieving break even or expanding. Most of us doesn’t know that this is not entrepreneurship is all about but just self employment and its not going to lead us anywhere towards financial freedom.
Wait! I am hearing you.
“Ramya , Then why don’t tell us how to outsmart this vicious circle of self employment and move towards entrepreneur ship”
Believe me, you can achieve it as a child’s play if you are determined to do it. I am just sharing piece of knowledge, I gained in my roller coaster experience of Startup Journey and fine-tuning it constantly..
Everybody has same 24 hours a day, but have you ever thought how Ambanis and Tatas manage to run countless business in the same time frame when we are struggling to run one at a time? You may tell they have the luxury of hiring.
Well! May not be the reason. Remember your business is your baby and you have to make the decisions, even if nanny is there. Hence it doesn’t matter if you are an one man army or Tata or Ambani, you have your own set of responsibilities which you cannot escape and also its achievable for Startups too.
Plan your Routines: Only there is one way how you can handle it. Manage your time efficiently. Spend 60% your time in planning and 40% in implementing.Split your tasks as monthly, fortnightly, weekly and daily.
For example, If you are blogger you can have a day in a week when you will draft your contents for the whole week. Monthly once you can draft a content plan. Daily basis you can publish the content.If you conduct webinars, you can dedicate whole day in a week for shooting videos.
In a gist we can say categorize your activities as monthly, weekly, daily, prioritize those activities according to their importance allocate a time for that activity and stick to that with discipline and importantly track your activities planned. Hope this may help newbies to some extent in reducing their stress.
Networking as we all say is not just becoming members of reputed business forums by paying a lumpsum amount, attending High teas, just getting to see some new faces, exchanging business cards, and once we are out, back to our business. There are certain things Pre and Post activities, you need to do if you are attending a networking meeting. Today the whole world is just your palm size. Really I mean it.
If you are going for a meeting, and you know who are the speakers, attendees, browse about them online. Don’t just See how can they be helpful to your business, also look for what you can offer to their business.
Go with the mindset of giving. Whatever you give comes back.
If possible take some small free samples of your product and allow people to be aware of it and use it. Post meeting connect with people through social media like FB, Linked In or Twitter. Just remind them where you met while sending a friend request.If you have a business page invite them to Like it.
Whatever size of the business , how much ever old and successful it is, if its not staying up to the trend, the business will eventually die. We should be upgrading ourselves in 360 degrees, in our industry related areas and also be open minded to grasp new strategies, adopt to new technologies and understanding the changing customer expectations.
Create Online identity:
To start with,have a simple website with at-least minimal information of your products/services, contact info, Store location Map, if you don’t have enough budget. You can self create a simple website using free themes and WordPress. Get your business listed in online business directories . Create a Facebook business page and depending on your product or service, choose other relevant social media platform and create account in your business names in those platforms. What I mean is, for example, if your business is hair styling, then pictures play a major role, hence its important to have a Instagram account and post your work consistently there.
Tracking Finances is the most important high priority master task everyone has to do. Not all the entrepreneurs are finance experts and good news is you need not be. You need not draft a balance sheet, but you should know the components of a balance sheet and at-least understand it when given by your auditor. Just have basic finance knowledge, use simple excel sheet and track your income and expenses and at the end of the month calculate the revenue (Income-Revenue), based on those figures.Record the outstanding amounts also . It will give you a clear idea on what you are spending, how much you are spending . If you are comfortable with excel, you can set excel macros to alert when the fixed amount exceeds. Now a days you get so many free Mobile apps which can be used to track the finances, that makes life easy. Categorize the spending like Marketing budget, Asset creation, Client support budget, Workshops/Training budget, freelancing budget etc and have a clear understanding on spending and accordingly fine tune it.
All the above 5 points , each one by itself can be dealt in detail. Stay tuned. I will be doing that in my upcoming posts.