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Entrepreneur Tips: What Makes a Successful Entrepreneur?

By Bidvest Bank
14-03-2016
We all know the advantages of being an entrepreneur and owning your own business. Beyond a sense of accomplishment and independence, running a successful SME is the best way to attain both wealth and freedom. The prospect seems almost too good to be true, and unfortunately for many new entrepreneurs, it is. There are some sobering facts around the survival rate of new small businesses, with some revealing that as many as five out of seven South African SMEs fail within their first year. So what separates the cream from the crop? We hone in on six entrepreneurial qualities essential to business success. 

1. The drive to succeed

Whether your ambition is inspired by a yearning to create something in the world or the burning desire to make something of yourself, it’s what you do with that ambition that counts. For a business to succeed, good entrepreneurial advice is to focus squarely on your customer – what quality product, excellent service or new experience are you providing that they can’t, or can no longer, live without?

2. A clear vision 

When it comes to business success, dreams are great but a plan is better. A practical and realistic vision that clarifies exactly how to build and grow your business will bridge the gap between frothy ambition and solid success.  For starters, you need to make sure you have the competitive advantage in your field. So what separates you from the herd, and how is your business like nothing else? If you’re beginning your start-up journey, it’s worth checking out these six need-to-know entrepreneur tips (<hyperlink to: https://www.bidvestbank.co.za/news-room/news-view.aspx?i=61>) to help you create a profitable business environment. 

3. Tenacity 

Once you get going it won’t be long before you reach a stumbling block, a hurdle, or a mountainous challenge that seems impossible to scale.  The determination to get over it is the essential difference between your success and the failure of a hundred other entrepreneurs who may have had the ideas, but not the chutzpah to follow through, work through the difficulties and ultimately come out on top. 

4. Passion and adaptability

Ambition may have led you to the entrepreneurs’ table but it’s passion that’ll keep you there. Passion not only fuels the fire to succeed, but also how you feel about what you do shines through the product or service you provide. If you believe in your business, it’s more likely potential customers will too. In saying that, it’s essential to keep an open mind about how your business needs to develop to best serve those customers. In a rapidly changing market, flexibility and adaptability is key. 


5. The ability to take calculated risks 

Contrary to irresponsible entrepreneur advice, business success is very rarely the result of extreme risk-taking.  Instead, profitable success is determined by taking calculated chances that in fact reduce risk along the way. That’s not to say you should do away with innovation and taking a chance on fresh opportunities when they arise, but be sure to follow an adequate risk-evaluation process before leaping in.  

6. Being money smart

If financial success is the goal (which it should be), you better be sure you’re keeping one and a half eyes on your cash flow. Pumping blood into your business’s cash flow makes every aspect of business possible. One way to maintain a healthy cash flow is to try and keep your costs down as much as possible. For ideas on how to do this, take a look at this advice for entrepreneurs on how to reduce business expenses. 

If you’re interested in business banking that offers personal service, open a Bidvest Bank One-to-One Business Bank Account,  and benefit from developing a relationship with a single point of contact, one person dedicated to your banking needs. Find out more.