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6 entrepreneurial management hacks that will make you a better leader

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Understanding management principles and efficient use of business resources is vital for entrepreneurial leadership. Learning and practising these six skills will help you efficiently achieve your goal of starting, running and growing your business.

What is entrepreneurial management?

An entrepreneur is a creator.

You will start, run and grow businesses where there was previously no business. Introducing management to entrepreneurship requires you to take responsibility for the productive and efficient allocation of resources towards your business goals.

Entrepreneurial management can be mastered with the six hacks, below. Each recommendation will help you assess your management skills, so you can succeed with your business mission:

1. Tackle your most important tasks and delegate other rest

As your business grows, you’ll only get busier and busier. You’ll be pressured by business responsibilities, competing tasks and urgent requests. Each incomplete task, internal pressure or customer demand will need to be crossed off your list, but you may find it difficult to know where to start.

Being objective is usually the best approach to combat overlapping demands and urgent to-do lists. Try not to let yourself be distracted by the loud noisy sources around you and focus on one thing; the needs of your customers.

Can you delight your customers with your product or service?

Keeping your main focus on your customer will help you choose the most important actions for you and your team. As you know, the customer is not always right, but the customer however, is what keeps you in business and their concerns should be addressed ahead of other less important activities.

2. Enhance your personal and professional network with meaningful connections

Building your network with meaningful connections may help you find the right people, in the right place at the right time to help you succeed.

The need to manage meaningful interactions within your business with colleagues, co-founders and your team is necessary for any entrepreneur. Respectful and emotionally intelligent communication with colleagues and team will encourage good communication habits throughout your business.

Resonating with like-minded people opens more communication channels, more contacts and more customers intertwined with your success. A group of team members, partners and colleagues pushing you forward can only improve your chances to meet your objectives.

3. Use decision making tools, decision models and productivity hacks to keep you focussed

Making too many bad business decisions may lead to business failure.

Decision making is a key skill which needs to be mastered quickly by all business owners. You will have a stack of decisions to make when you start your side hustle or full entrepreneurial project. Increasing your business success will require constant levelling up of your decision making capabilities.

Using decision making models like the Stephen R. Covey decision-making framework using an urgent-important categorisation quadrant within the book; The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is one way to categorise your decisions.

In circumstances of go-no-go decisions, you may have to understand how you think about your options and decide on the best mental model to support your personal decision making.

Some business people can run on their subconscious; using pattern recognition to make decisions, but if you’re starting a new business it becomes difficult to know what to do without guidance or an approach for strategic decision making.

Take the time to think how you think, this way you’ll be less likely to make the same mistakes over and over again.

4. Listen to your customers and build long-term relationships

Your customers are the lifeblood of your business.

It doesn’t matter if you have funding, you’re using your savings or you’re bootstrapping your business with freelancing work. Your focus should be on getting your offer in front of potential customers.

Focusing on your customer and their problems ensures they remain front and centre of your business focus and by doing this it’s likely they'll be inclined to review, recommend or criticise your business within the public spotlight.

Building, segmenting and managing long-term customer relationships will help you grow and develop with your customers. Meaning as your customers' needs change, you will be perfectly placed with long-standing relationships to discuss and learn your customer’s problems, hopes and challenges.

The more you listen to your customers and understand their concerns; the more knowledge you will have of the people or businesses that will drive you to success. As long as you provide them with value, you will continue to receive ongoing recognition and more importantly customer retention.

5. Collaborate with your co-founders, team, partners and suppliers

Remember there's no 'i' in 'team'.

There are always other people, businesses or groups involved; either directly or indirectly. Managing the collaboration between different groups will help you resolve customer problems.

Managing skilled people to align with your entrepreneurial vision is one of your main responsibilities as business owner. Efficient communication with team members and partners will help you resolve issues and collaboratively make effective decisions.

If you’re working with a founding team or partners it can be beneficial to empower them to make decisions based on their particular skill set, this way each of them will feel valued for their decision making.

6. Run your business with trust and honesty

Honesty and integrity are vital.

Running your business with awareness of your actions will delight your customers, motivate your co-founders and engage your team with your entrepreneurial mission.

Learning to be an attentive listener whilst giving honest feedback whilst not only demonstrating responsibility but accountability for your businesses showing your honesty and business integrity.

Building a team you trust, along with a trusting community of partners, suppliers and customers could deliver standout results for your business and all concerned. Being genuine throughout your customer's journey, partner interactions and colleague communication will set you apart from the rest.

Final thoughts on entrepreneurial management

Managing and leading entrepreneurial teams is tough within any industry, but starting and running your own entrepreneurial operation makes some of the decisions more difficult.

There may not be a ‘boss’ in the traditional sense telling you what to do, but your customers will expect you to manage your business, so they can enjoy your value proposition, essentially making them your ‘boss’. Full business responsibility is on your shoulders and you will need to resolve issues and concerns quickly, while being transparent and communicating honestly and empathetically with your customers.

At the end of the day the buck stops with you, but this empowers you to manage and drive your business to success

Good luck!

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