April 15, 2019
Small Business Owners Offer Advice to Their Peers
By: Jenna Paulus, Public Relations Manager, Deluxe
For the new “Small Business Tips” series, we met one-on-one with inspiring entrepreneurs all across America. Each one shares actionable insights and lessons to help other small business owners overcome some of their biggest (and most common) challenges.
What advice would you give to other small business owners? We asked that question as we traveled across the country in January, to the Top 10 towns as part of Season 4 of Small Business Revolution.
At Deluxe, we offer small business owners advice on a variety of topics on our Small Business Resource Center and across our “Main Street” episodes. But sometimes, especially for small businesses, owners like to hear from their peers, people who have likely experienced many of the same challenges. The video above highlights some of the answers we received, but in speaking with these small business owners in January and others I know, there were some common themes when it came to advice for small business owners from small business owners:
- Be willing to take advice
Let’s face it, it is sometimes difficult to take advice. I for one remember plenty of times in my life when my parents would give me advice, I wouldn’t take it and, in the end, they were right, and I should have listened. (Hey, look mom and dad, I can finally admit that!) Running a business requires confidence in what you’re doing, but also humility. It’s important to realize you don’t always know what to do. So as a small business owner, being able to take advice from mentors and individuals that have been in the business is a great start on the road to success.
- Surround yourself with business associates you can trust
Taking advice might be the first step but finding the right people to give you advice is also important. Those may be financial advisors, accountants, attorneys and others. As a small business owner, it’s likely you’ll need to hire an accountant or attorney to help you with things along the way, so making sure these are people you can trust is important. Whether that’s through word of mouth or research, finding those people you can trust will help not only you but also your business. At Deluxe we love being a partner small businesses can trust by offering marketing services including payroll services, retail packaging, print marketing, website design and more.
- Be willing and prepared to make tough decisions
As a small business owner, there are going to be many tough decisions that must be made. Professionally, you may need to decide if you are ready to make a hire or if you need to put money towards your marketing or even when it’s time to move on. Personally, especially if you have a family, you need to decide if you’re pushing yourself too hard as a business owner. If your heart isn’t in it, then you might have some tough decisions to make.
- Treat employees the way you want to be treated
Throughout our travels we met many small business owners who have hired employees, from Bad Dog Distillery in Arlington, Washington to Southern Drawl Boutique in Durant, Oklahoma. Making sure to treat your employees with respect and realize they have lives too is important. As we learned from Rachel K’s Bakery in Washington, North Carolina, she knows her employees have families to support, so offering them a livable wage is something she strives to do. Employees are like family, so treating them as such will only help your business succeed.
As a small business owner, giving advice to others who are facing similar struggles to you is one of the easiest things you can do to give back and pay it forward. We love learning more from small business owners across the country, so stay tuned for more advice and stories from them in the coming months!
Looking for more advice? You can find more resources in Deluxe’s Small Business Resource Center.