The success of so many small businesses is based upon the multi-tasking abilties of their employees. Not just understanding how each individual facet of their chosen business works but also how they interact.
Just as at school you were encouraged to get as wide an education as possible so if you start in a small business you are often encouraged – or forced – into getting a broad education and understanding of different areas of the business.
It’s why so many entrepreneurs are successful, they usually have had a grounding in accounting, in legal implications and sales at some point in their early career. So when they enter bigger deals they have a better insight into potential pitfalls. They may not be the best but they have a basic knowledge and understanding.
Jack of All Trades, Master of None
Having that grounding of a broad understanding of business is the best foundations to building a strong business… but don’t get carried away. Nobody is perfect and nobody is able to know everything, so don’t think you can. The wider education has to be put into perspective and applied correctly. Knowing your limits is as important as knowing nine different things. Even for a small business there is no replacement for expert advice.
That doesn’t mean you should be running to a lawyer or accountant every five minutes, but make sure you surround yourself with those experts and build relationships with them for when you do really need them. There is no shame in asking for help. In fact, there is more shame in not asking and getting it wrong which could unravel all the hard work you have already put in to build your business.
Team effort, Less stress
Building a team or network of helpful contacts is probably the best investment you could ever make – even better than the flashiest computer system. It is why those companies that do social media so well also find they are more successful in modern business – it is an alternative definition of “not what you know, but who you know”.
However good you are, there will be gaps in your knowledge and that is when you need to call upon a friend or somebody in your network. Having these already around you or part of your regular contact circle means considerably less stress when you do really need them, saving the hassle of trawling through local directories when you are in dire straits.
Educate yourself too
The amount of business information and tips that is available nowadays is 100 fold that available even a decade ago. Blogs, books, webinars even social networks are full of information to help you expand your knowledge – it just needs to be used correctly.
When do you look to experts for help? Have you found social media a successful help option?