Anyone who has run a small business can tell you that it is a full-time commitment. There are a lot of moving parts, difficult decisions to be made on a daily basis, and a never-ending list of things which will drain your time and finances, but help improve your business in the long run. So to most small business owners, the idea of running more than one business seems impossible. But for those who do, it can be an extremely lucrative decision, and one which mitigates potential risk and deepens your personal portfolio. So if you are thinking of opening another business, or you already run multiple businesses, here are 4 tips on how to succeed.
1. Ask for Help – We all have things we are good at, then things we are less good at. By understanding where you excel, you can focus on your strengths and hire people to help in other areas. This can include things like proposal writing, SEO, filing taxes, or managing payroll. If there is a cost-effective option out there, it might be worth the money to hire a firm or an individual to handle it for you, so you can focus on running the businesses.
2. Prioritize – Make lists, follow lists, live by lists. By creating to-do lists and sticking with them, you will be sure you get everything critical done today and are setup to have a successful tomorrow. Emergencies come up, whether with network issues, staffing issues, or client issues, there is bound to be a problem at some point. But by being organized and understanding what needs to be done today and what can be done tomorrow, you will be prepared to take on any challenges. You will also be sure you don’t forget to take care of something today that can’t wait until tomorrow.
3. Copy and Paste – If you’ve already got a successful model for invoicing, why change it for the next business? If you have a management structure that works, why re-work it? Look at your existing businesses and find what works that will be needed in the new business. By taking processes and models from one business and instituting them in the other, you are making your life easier and ensuring you will have success, at least in that area of the business.
4. No More Handouts – Most business owners spend time every day on activities which they know will never lead to business. Whether it’s spending an hour talking a friend through an idea, going to meetings that will never lead to business, or taking that prospect out to lunch for the fourth time this month, this is wasted time. Remember, if it isn’t helping you build your business, it is hurting your business.
It is never easy to run a business, let alone multiple businesses, but it can be done. And if you keep these tips in mind, you’ll have a fighting chance of success.