Tips from our executive, Ryan Puccinelli:
- Always stay focused on Sales
I think everyone that starts a business knows that without sales there is no company, however it’s very easy to get caught up in the day to day “building” of the business and lose focus on what is important. As Mark Cuban always says, “sales cures all” and it couldn’t be more true. There have been times in my business that things are going good and the focus gets set on a new technology, new systems, ways to be more efficient, however without the consistent and unrelenting focus on sales there won’t be profit to keep the business alive. Whatever your model is and however your business generates revenue focus on that as a top priority every day.
- Commit to recruiting
Recruit. Recruit. Recruit. This is something that I’ve learned the hard way over the years and now understand that nearly as important as focusing on sales, recruiting is the single most important thing that can be done. Too many entrepreneurs interview a few candidates that apply and pick the best “C” player to fill the role because they need it filled. Why is this so common? Because it’s easy! There is a fundamental difference between hiring and recruiting. Just as in sports, the best of the best are not typically seeking employment. Do you think Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks, arguably the best hockey player on the planet will ever be looking? No way! He has been recruited though his entire career. Recruiting is hard. It takes persistence and time, but getting the right team that fits culturally and believes in the same values is key to success.
- Be optimistic, but stay realistic
Every entrepreneur at the start is optimistic otherwise they wouldn’t dare get into this crazy roller coaster of a lifestyle! While optimism is a characteristic that entrepreneurs must have, over optimism can lead to disaster. Always make sure to stay positive, stay optimistic, but most importantly stay realistic in all areas.
- Things will not go as planned
Talk to any entrepreneur and I’m confident they will tell you this as well – things will NOT go as planned. Period. You can crunch data, plan as meticulously as possible, however things will change. As they say, life happens. This is a fundamental trait to know so you’re prepared. It’s crucial to understand that you can be going 100mph in one direction and have to spin a u-turn. Perfecting the audible at the line like Peyton Manning did so well over his career is key. It’s being mentally and structurally prepared to roll with the punches.
- Know your target customer
Many entrepreneurs have an idea and do whatever it takes to make sales. I did it here at IQ Total Source. Anyone and everyone that wanted to buy was a great customer and we were fortunate to have had them early on in our business. As we’ve grown we know that in order to scale, we need to focus on the right customer that will allow this to happen. In reflecting on where you’d like to go, I encourage every entrepreneur to get very, very clear and specific on what their ideal customer is and put a plan and strategy together to go get them.