skills to run a successful business
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Entrepreneurship is one of the toughest trades. Whether you’re a long-time business owner or someone just starting out, there are certain skills you want to master to have the most success possible. While you may have an innovative business idea, without the proper skills, executing it successfully can be extremely challenging.

Every successful business has a small business owner that mastered the key skills needed behind it.  With some hard work, you too can learn these skills too, and master your business craft in no time. 

Let’s look at the top 5 entrepreneurial skills that will set you up for maximum success in running your business.

1. Leadership and management skills

These two go hand in hand. Entrepreneurs are expected to wear many different hats, and one of the main hats they must wear is that of the leader. As the business owner, the expectation is that you’re going to lead the way for your entire company and that means that your employees are going to look to you to know what to do themselves. If you have a strong vision and follow it, your employees will follow suit. However, if you start to slack off and show poor decision-making, others will follow suit.

Beyond leadership, there’s also managing effectively. And managing a team is more hands on requiring strong people skills and soft skills as you try to navigate people’s feelings. Emotional intelligence is key here. Someone who is emotionally intelligent can understand how to navigate the complicated feelings of their employees and provide a safe place for them to voice their opinions and thrive.

This means being self-aware, socially-aware, and strong in relationship management.

Every business succeeds or fails by the people who make it up, and as the captain of that ship, you need to set a good example.

2. Business-savvy

The business world is complicated! Trying to start a new business or even trying to grow your own business can be extremely difficult. Whether it’s a small business or a big one, mastering the business skills necessary to launch and operate successfully will go a long way toward success and organization. 

One of the most important skills to work on is learning how to create a successful business plan. This involves a lot of strategic thinking and analysis as you’re working out a business model and trying to establish profitability and create business growth. 

There are many ways to create a successful business plan, but finding the right one for your specific business is the challenging part. Consider all aspects from your industry to your target customers, to the state of your finances, and more, and utilize that information to make decisions.

Having the business-savvy to make complex decisions and organize your plan accordingly will help your business grow.

3. Time management

Every successful entrepreneur needs to know how to effectively manage their time, so they and their team can work in the most efficient way possible.

Consider scheduling out your days and planning when you will work on different duties so you don’t feel bogged down by a hundred different tasks. For example, you can schedule out when you’re going to post on social media, when you’re going to have sales meetings, when you’re going to brainstorm product ideas. This will help you stay organized.

And not only is managing your own time important, equally is managing the time of the people that work for you. Ensure that your time is being spent on valuable projects by learning to delegate and empowering your team to solve problem solve. 

For example, if you have a major sales call coming up and you need to prep for that, but you also must write up a quick post for social media, someone else can work on the social media posts while you focus your time on the sales call prep.

4. Balancing risk-taking with realism

One of the toughest parts of being an entrepreneur is making difficult decisions. Like evaluating whether a partnership makes sense for your business, or a deal you’re considering.

Regardless, there’s a fine line between being a risk taker and being reckless. On the other hand, there’s also a fine line between being realistic and being too afraid.

Learning how to balance along those lines will help you make key decisions confidently.

Remember, new opportunities will come up every day as an entrepreneur, and it’s going to be up to you to assess them and determine whether your business could benefit from these decisions. You must be able trust yourself to make the right decisions.

5. Sales

When all is said and done, your business may thrive or fail based on how well you are at selling. If you can’t sell the vision (or often the product itself), it will be challenging to secure the necessary funds to keep the business going. Sales skills can include anything from showcasing the benefits of your business, to making a relatable connection with your customers, building key relationships with partners and vendors, and plenty more. There are lots of online courses you can take on sales if you don’t find your skill set is ideal, but it’s imperative not to get complacent.

You’re looking to drive business and to successfully do so and overcome challenges along the way, a sales-minded approach can be a valuable skillset. Utilize your entrepreneurship skills and networking skills to get in the door, then use your sales skills to close deals that will help your business continue to operate effectively.

The more sales you make, the more money you’ll bring in, the more your business will succeed.


Honing these skills will help set you and your business up for success. Though some may seem challenging, embracing that challenge and seeing how you can shape yourself as a savvy entrepreneur will lead to long-term success. For more info on how to brush up on the skills mentioned above, check out 5 ways to spread the word about your small business and how to start a business in the U.S. as an immigrant.

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