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5 Ways to Go From Skilled Craftsman to Successful Businessman:
The Alternative Board® Helps Make the Transformation
DENVER—June 11, 2012—How do you take a person who is excellent in a skilled trade and set them up to prosper in the business world when they have no business acumen in their skill set? The transition is often challenging. The Alternative Board (TAB), with more than two decades of business coaching experience, has helped thousands of business owners worldwide run better businesses. What follows are some of the most important lessons learned from these encounters on how to grow from a craftsman to a businessman.
1. Commit to Your Goals in Writing
The drive to start your own business could have come from a stroke of genius but more likely, it came from the desire to want to do things your own way. In order to maintain that level of control, you need to be goal and achievement oriented.
Start with your vision and write down short, middle and long term obtainable goals. Not only will these goals organize your focus, but also the small accomplishments along the way will keep your product and business in forward motion. By writing them down you are creating a contract with yourself, which you are less likely to break. TAB’s proprietary tool, Strategic Business Leadership® helps owners identify and reach their goals.
2. Know What You Don’t Know
You’ve already proven that you are a master of your craft. What is less likely is that you are an expert at how to run a business. Fortunately, there are experts in fields crucial to your business success. Seek out other craftsmen that have mastered their craft, to assist where and when needed. For example: an accountant to manage your finances, an attorney to deal with legal issues, a human resource expert to help you find the best employees and a marketing strategist to promote your brand. Don’t be afraid to reach out for assistance when you need it.
3. Be Organized
How can you build a house if all of your tools and supplies are in disarray? The same applies to your business. Keep detailed records of your financials, employee hiring and sales trends. Not only will this information alert you to obstacles your company might face, but it will help you hurdle those obstacles before they become insurmountable.
Owning your company comes with a list of seemingly never-ending tasks. Small achievable goals will keep you from being overwhelmed while also ensuring the most important needs are met first.
4. Be Innovative
Steve Jobs did not become one of the most recognizable innovators of all time by being content with solely creating the Mac. He outdid himself and surprised the world with the invention of the iPhone, iPod, and iPad. Constantly using your creativity to improve your product will give you an edge in business; a necessary process to keep your brand from becoming stagnant.
Jason Zickerman, CEO of The Alternative Board states, “I personally know hundreds of business owners who attribute their success to the TAB processes. Their board holds them accountable to continually evolve their companies based on market demands.”
5. Know Your Competitors
Just as a good opponent can push you to better performance on the court or on the field, a strong competitor will keep your business sharp. You need to know as much about their practices as your own. By comparing your products, price and profitability, you can give your business the advantage by optimizing it. They also may be doing things to market their product that you had not yet considered. Some of the best ideas start as seeds planted by your competitors. TAB’s Business Vantage® is a proprietary tool helping business owners assess their business against their competitors.
Learning how to build a business is like learning any new skill. Just as repetition with your craft increases your mastery over it, you can also become a better business owner. With simple steps, knowledge and the right tools your business can be poised for growth. Add a little creativity and the appropriate outside counsel; the next major project you take on could be whether or not to take your business public.
About The Alternative Board
The Alternative Board (TAB) is an exclusive, membership-based organization that helps business owners achieve profitability, productivity and personal fulfillment using peer advisory boards and private business coaching. Through a platform of knowledge and guidance, The Alternative Board delivers real world advice that provides a result driven advantage to help business owners stay focused on what matters most. Headquartered in Denver, CO, The Alternative Board has been helping business owners succeed for over 20 years. For more information, visit www.TheAlternativeBoard.com and http://www.facebook.com/