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The Secret to Success in Life and Business

Updated on August 12, 2013

Think Big Like Donald Trump

Starting a small business is a major undertaking that requires planning, hard work, and determination. Starting a small business is also a great way to get ahead in life, exercise and explore your creativity, and even become a big business owner.

Many large corporations began as small businesses, and with the right planning and a serious attitude to think big right from the start, there is no limit to the success of your small business.

No matter what kind of business you are getting into you must devise a business plan. Not having a business plan is like building a house without a foundation.

Donald Trump is a perfect example of success and whether you like him personally or not, a wise business owner will always learn from super entrepreneurs while others find fault with them, or come out with reasons that they can't possibly do as well as someone like Donald Trump because they haven't been given the opportunities, or because their father did not have the connections, ect, ect.

Bob's Big Boy Is Well Branded

San Diego Pool Service/ The Pool Nanny

What Successful Small Businesses Do

  • Innovation- Regardless of what your business is, don't follow exactly what all the others are doing. When you do things that are out of the ordinary your business gets recognized for being the innovators in the industry.
  • taking risks- As frightening as it is, going out on a limb must be done at some point in order to get ahead of the heap.
  • big dreams- hard by the yard -a cinch by the inch... Have the biggest most outrageous image of your success in mind and on paper. Take little tiny steps toward your goal. don't take on too much at once. Slow and steady wins the race.
  • marketing and promotion- It is important to keep your name out there. At some point you will want to try commercials, youtube videos, submitting articles to the local paper, having your employees wear your shirts logo in a local 5K, or sending out promotions. Marketing is a very important part of business start up.
  • excellent customer service-do not ignore the importance of your customers after you have them. One of the big mistakes small businesses make as they grow is that they get the customer on the hook and then forget about them. Pool services, maid services and sole proprietors in general have a habit of doing this, and then they are surprised when the customer dumps them. The relationship should be taken care of just as a marriage should be. Your customers, especially the very first ones should be reminded that they are your VIPs. This way they will feel taken care of and special. When small perks or even a yearly card of acknowledgement are sent out your customers will not want to got to someone else and feel as though they are building a relationship from scratch.
  • branding- This is one that sole proprietors miss out on a lot. The importance of branding is everything. When a product is branded properly people think of your product without giving the competition a thought. Well branded products in which an image is used can make the branding process a lot easier. Think of ones in which you can look at the image without the name and know what it is. If you were in the burger business and decided to use a big fat boy standing in front of your restaurant holding a burger, and call your restaurant Bob's Big Boy, you will know that your image is branded well by the fact that people can see that "Big Boy" in any context and everyone knows what he is about. The sign can fall down in a storm and people won't wonder what kind of restaurant it is. It takes years for a business to develop that level of branding but The Pool Nanny of San Diego is branding right now with the image of a 1940s pin up girl. No one else in the pool service industry has gone out on a limb with a feminine image or branded the image home like The Pool Nanny.
  • Pay attention to the trends. Internet, gadgets, ect. - Times change and your business and its image can easily become archaic if not kept in check. The younger generation will expect you to be on facebook, twitter, and have a web site. One of the first things people do when they hear your business name is go to the internet.

A Word of Caution

Going into business for yourself should not be an event that transpires on a whim. There is way too much at stake in owning your own business to jump into it carefree; oversights could cost a lot more than your business. It can also cost you everything you've work so hard to build. Before letting your imagination get too far ahead of you, do your research and studying to be certain of just what you are getting into.

One of the best places to start your research is with a good accountant. It is vital that you have a good, experienced accountant who knows the pitfalls and dangers of various business ventures. Extensive experience is vital here; an accountant who's just starting out will not have the wealth of experience to guide you. Someone who has been in the field for many years will have all kinds of real life examples related to your businesses to help you make the right decisions. They will understand how success and failure are achieved after witnessing the details of exactly who businesses have failed for lack of proper funding, proper management, or carelessness.

There is nothing more sobering and educational than listening to someone who has seen it all describing how talented and educated people have failed in business. This need not scare you away, I actually believe this knowledge will keep a good entrepreneur on their toes.


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    • Angela Blair profile image

      Angela Blair 4 years ago from Central Texas

      Having been a small business owner on several occasions -- I can guarantee you're spot on in this Hub. Good work and well written! Best/Sis

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Skarlet....Great hub. You have put each and every imperative aspect of "small business" into one very well-presented hub. I'll assume you have had personal experience or work in this field in some way.

      So much of this is information most individuals are unaware of.

      After retiring, my husband and I started and incorporated 2 small businesses, which we are able to operate successfully from home.

      We couldn't be happier with the way things have worked out and how quickly our business has grown and flourished over a 10 year period.

      This hub is an absolute MUST for anyone entertaining the prospect of a small business.......UP & shared.

    • collegedad profile image

      collegedad 5 years ago from The Upper Peninsula I have to run to Big Boy's for a hot fudge covered brownie ice cream sundae. I love that place!!