4 Keys To Small Business Longevity

Building a business is hard work. Holding a vision with passion and drive, crafting a business plan, and then having the tenacity to see it through can test those of us with even the most resolute attitude. As you set sail on your path to entrepreneurship, know that there will inevitably be ups and downs, and perhaps even periods of time where you are not seeing profit at all.

With dire statistics like “fifty percent of small businesses don’t make it past the five-year mark”, you must set yourself apart from those institutions that couldn’t stand the test of time. Put your nose to the grindstone, keep your vision and goals in the forefront of your mind, and read on to see how you can weather the “storms” and ensure longevity.

How to make your business stand the test of time
Following a simple formula for business, success is not enough; you must repeatedly take action outside your comfort zone to ensure that you change along with your industry. Take these steps to see the success that lasts:

1. Relentlessly focus on your customers
If you don’t have customers, you don’t have much. You likely got into your current line of business to make a difference in the world, but who are you catering to? Who is your target audience? Find out who they are, and then cater to their every whim and wish. Building a loyal customer base and then continuing to do outreach will ensure that no matter what the current economy is doing, you’ll come out on top.

2. Avoid being an introvert
Regardless of how much “real-world experience” you come to the entrepreneurial table with, there is always something more you can learn. Your business will only grow to the extent that you do; be a leader who learns, researches, and assimilates new information in an attempt to make your entire organization more efficient and profitable. Take classes, network, ask questions, engage in conversations with other business builders. Above all, embrace an attitude of growth and expansion, and you will see the same happen in your business.

3. Take care of your employees
If you’re asking people to come and help build a vision and dream with you, you had better be prepared to take care of them! Build a culture that also supports employee growth and development while being mindful of work/life balance, and you’ll have people who choose to stay with you on your way to the top.

4. Act with integrity in all situations
Building relationships with employees, vendors, and customers takes time, but it is one of the most rewarding aspects of business that you’ll gain from starting out on your own. Act with integrity in all situations, from creating schedules and paying bills to satisfying customer orders and creating new products. Your reputation will precede you, and you’ll have clients and customers alike clamoring to do business with you for years to come.

There will be ups and downs, there will be periods of drought and periods of abundance. If you hold fast to your vision and passion and refuse to quit, as well as employ the strategies listed above, you will see consistent, lasting business success. Best of luck to you on your entrepreneurial journey!