The Five Keys to Business Success

    As a business owner, you have many ways to define success. You may consider success to be a this link for certain number of customers, a certain net profit or percentage of your market, your length of time in business, the number of employees you have, or any combination of a thousand others. No matter how you define it though, most successful businesses have the following five key elements in common.

    1. Planning – It really is true that without a plan for where you want to end up, you have little chance of getting there. The number one reason that most new businesses fail is because of their lack of anticipating the problems they will face due to a lack of planning.

    2. Goal Setting – Along with planning comes goal setting. Ask any successful person in business, or anywhere else, if they set and then work towards attaining goals, or do they just “go with the flow” and hope for the best. The answer is obvious but so often overlooked.

    3. Adaptation – Every business, no matter the kind, faces an ever-changing array of challenges and competition. It is the ability to adapt and overcome these challenges that will decide whether the business will survive or not. The marketplace is littered with the corpses of countless businesses that have been unable or unwilling to adapt to change.

    4. Innovation – More important than just being able to adapt to changing market conditions, a successful business person will need to constantly focus their efforts on innovation and improvement or may find themselves out of business when even loyal customers look to the competition to provide something they haven’t thought of.

    5. Market Constantly – Marketing is not just selling or advertising or any one thing. Instead it is everything you do and every face you present to the world. Every time you talk to a customer, answer a phone, fill an order, or even when talking to a supplier you are marketing yourself and your company. Remember this and take advantage of it by presenting a consistent face to the world in everything you do.

    Every one of these five elements is critical to the success of your business. It will help if you think of them as five pieces of a puzzle that you must fit together to turn your ideas, hard work, money, and skills into a successful business, no matter how you define it.

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