It didn’t matter whether you were a business or a consumer, everything from the UK energy crisis to cost of living made 2022 an incredibly tough year for many. Unfortunately, with a poll of 101 economists for the Financial Times claiming the UK is facing the “worst and longest recession” out of the G7 nations, 2023 has not started any better.
If a silver lining is to be found, however, it’s worth remembering that in periods of great difficulty, such as this, the innovative attitude of savvy entrepreneurs can help them thrive! Here, Sarah Kauter – managing director of the digital PR and marketing agency, VerriBerri – has provided her top 5 tips to ensure your business succeeds in 2023.
1. Don’t Face It Alone
A lot of entrepreneurs hold the very proud notion that they have the ability to handle every aspect of their business by themselves. Whilst their technical understanding and methodical approach to it all may well be phenomenal, this attitude is just not practical or sustainable. Furthermore, every successful entrepreneur must prove their ability to successfully delegate. For an employee to give you their all, they need to be challenged with the authority to solve problems for themselves.
Aside from your business’ needs, however, make sure to consider your needs, too! By opting to tackle everything alone, loneliness is inevitable. Building a trustworthy team will not only help you to improve your business, but may also provide many mental health benefits.
2. Hire The Right People
As an entrepreneur, letting go of complete control can be difficult but having a solid team around you to delegate to can ease this anxiety. The right hiring strategy will need to be in place in order to make this possible. Many employers will focus their interview questions solely around the task, without much of an attempt to learn about the person. This certainly isn’t a foolproof way of securing a great hire. Speaking to someone on a personal level will help you make a clear judgement.
All the traditional aspects of the interview process are, of course, important and shouldn’t be forgotten, but it’s also a good idea for the candidate to meet the team before they’re offered the job (and before they accept it!). Give them the opportunity to speak with the team; for questions to be shared back and forth. You’ve interviewed them, now give them the opportunity to interview you. This will ensure you’re hiring someone that isn’t just capable, but passionate about the work.
3. Understand Your Audience
It goes without saying that the way you present yourself to customers and clients is very important. One mistake a lot of entrepreneurs make right off the bat is assuming everyone is their client; everyone is their customer. It’s easy to see why this enthusiastic mindset could be viewed as a positive, but it’s ultimately a hindrance, as you will be unable to effectively pinpoint your actual target audience and deliver the value they expect and deserve. Pleasing everybody is an impossibility.
Success in 2023 will require many businesses to adopt a more customer-focused approach. As many people have less money to spend, they will inevitably put a greater focus on purchases that have real value. Listen to what your prospective clients and customers not only want, but need. This will help you maximise the value you provide.
It’s easy, and largely correct, to state that such things as the cost of living crisis and the recession are holding our businesses back. No one can dispute that. Something often dismissed, however, as it’s not particularly pleasant to consider or address, is that in many cases, we are the ones who hold ourselves back.
Self-reflection will lead to a greater awareness of how your relationship with work may be preventing you from meeting your own personal needs. Dismissing this can lead to negative emotions which, in turn, will result in negative work outcomes. Consider what decisions you can make that will leave you feeling calmer and more content in yourself and in the way your business operates. Perhaps you don’t see yourself as particularly creative, but your business requires a certain degree of creativity.
Don’t just suffer with your perceived inadequacy, as this mindset will only hold your business back. Work out what you can do to address these weaknesses and grow your business.
5. Learn From Your Mistakes
The previous four tips have been suggested in the effort to prevent mistakes, but it’s also very important to know how best to deal with the mistakes and issues that will inevitably arise. Mistakes are bound to happen, and embracing them as ‘feedback’, rather than ‘failure’, is one of the most productive things you can do.
Always strive for excellence over perfection. If something is perfect, it never wasn’t perfect, which is entirely unrealistic. If something is excellent, however, it exhibits hard work, resilience and dedication.
Success can’t exist without mistakes.