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Ask someone randomly on the street about what you need to be a successful entrepreneur. What do you think the answer is? If you think having a high net worth is going to be number one, think again.
In a recent study from the Kauffman Foundation, the most startling revelation was that more than 90% were well-educated. It doesn’t state if most people study business administration, but the skills learned in this degree can be invaluable for successful entrepreneurs.
Why is that? Keep reading to find out the best reasons to study business administration if you want to be an entrepreneur.
The Basic Needs of Entrepreneurship Explained
There are hundreds of things that make an entrepreneur successful, but everyone needs a few essential skills. What are they?
- Financial skills
- An air of confidence
- Taking criticism well
- Pattern recognition
- A dynamic mindset for scaling
Each of these skills is equally important, and almost no successful entrepreneur is without them. Let’s break down each of these six factors to get a better look at what each means.
It might be helpful to know a bit about IT and emerging technologies, but that’s not the kind of networking we’re talking about here. Networking instead is about making and keeping contacts and relationships. You don’t know when and how those relationships will pay off, but you can control why.
Being sincere, helpful, and communicative can help you draw people from all walks of life in all stations. You can also expand your connections with them.
Being authentic and sincere in networking brings the byproduct of people appreciating you and wanting to help you. This is one thing you can’t and don’t want to fake. You can develop good networking skills, but you must be authentic.
In addition, having a common ground opens the door to genuine communication. But a mutual love for a particular Marvel character is hardly the foundation for a long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationship.
In the end, the best way to be a good networker is to start realizing that it isn’t what you can get from people that is important. Instead, it’s what you can give and the value that people attribute to you as a person, not an asset class.
The two best skills you can develop in the realm of networking are:
- Asking good questions with sincere care and concern for others
- Being a good listener and trying to understand the needs of others
The takeaway is that viewpoint questions (and listening to the answer) are essential. People love to talk and love for others to hear. If you’re thinking about anything else while they’re talking, it should be to ask a related question or let them know how it resonated with you and what benefit you can offer to the conversation.
An Air of Confidence
A discussion on confidence can be tricky.
Instead of talking about what confidence is, we should point out what it is not. Confidence is not a belief that you cannot make a mistake. Bravery doesn’t mean that we don’t have fear. Similarly, confidence doesn’t mean we believe we are infallible.
Arrogance is the number one turnoff for most people, while confidence draws people to you. Networking is more difficult without confidence, as is getting investors and others to listen to your financial and business plans, for example.
Without confidence, you’re more likely to be an indecisive leader like a ship without a working rudder. This wastes time, energy, and patience of anyone dealing with your business. Joint studies with the University of Washington and University of Central Florida show that voluntary employee turnover is the largest driver is terrible leadership.
Instead of being overconfident, be genuine. Instead of thinking you have all the answers, ask for help and then make an informed decision.
You’ll have confidence that you are informed as much as you can be. The right educational background and relevant experience always help, but you can always be confident by leveraging the education and understanding of others.
Taking Criticism Like a Champ
If you network well, you’re likely to run into criticism from clients, vendors, competitors, and others. Suppose you are confident that you made the best decision with the information you had on hand, but someone criticizes you. In that case, it’s better to listen to the suggestions, look at possible solutions, and learn from the constructive feedback you receive.
Others have more, better, or different experiences than we do, and it’s valuable for us to pay attention to them.
If you are confident but not arrogant, it will be possible to take criticism well. If you’re arrogant, it will be nearly impossible. Knowing your limits (and that there’s more than one way to skin a cat) not only makes you an approachable employer and partner in business but helps you to push past them.
If you are arrogant, people will often hesitate to give you feedback at all. This will not give you opportunities to learn, and you may create potential business hazards for yourself.
Having Skills in Accounting
Dealing with basic accounting for a business is important to manage the finances of a business.
Granted, many people become entrepreneurs because they’re already an expert with a great idea for a product or business. However, unless they have a business partner that knows how to manage business transactions, they might end up dead in the water.
Without skills in recording business transactions, convincing people that your business plan is sound may be difficult to explain. It is important to understand the debits and credits to prepare a budget and business plan, and this is why it is beneficial for you to have these skills.
An entrepreneur without business administration experience would do well to take a crash course or get certification in business office administration. Basic human resources training, payroll, and marketing skills help you to make an adequate budget. And, knowing how to use standard tools like Excel and Quickbooks helps you track the financial health of your business.
Studying business administration helps you to recognize patterns in business, data, and behavior. You don’t need to have a degree in big data analysis to have skills in identifying patterns.
It’s important to track trends in your company (human resources), track expenses (budgeting), pay payroll and related taxes, and marketing to build your business. You should have these skills down before you can grow your business. These types of skills are typically taught in business courses.
Adaptive and Dynamic to Change
To “roll with the punches” and “strike while the iron’s hot” are essential skills to understand and embrace for any entrepreneur. Some times are good, and some are bad — you need to know how to deal with both.
Growth scaling is a term you’ll often hear in business. The problem is that companies both expand and contract in demand, but not always in size. You need to learn how to expand and contract your business and changes in the industry and demand for your product or service.
One of the most significant issues startups have, especially with a physical product, is scaling manufacturing and keeping up with quality and capital. Equally important is this: Once everyone has your product, can you scale back as quickly as you grew?
Otherwise, you may find yourself with massive overhead your business can’t afford.
There is often discussion about flexibility when running a business. This skill is often learned as you go along but may also be covered in business courses.
How to Succeed: Study Business Administration
No matter what people say will make you successful, you will find that it usually falls under one of these six points. Being confident about decisions means that what may look risky to others is an acceptable risk for you (or less risky than people imagine).
Let’s face it; most people are not talented in all six of these things out of the womb. These skills develop over time with directed effort. When you study business administration, it may help you gather these skills as a byproduct of your courses. You can also benefit from absorbing the experience of your peers and instructors.
Many business courses will teach you the essential tools to work in a business environment and, if later you decide to open your own business, you will have the skills that will assist you.
Start Your Path to Entrepreneurship Today
When you study business, you become more knowledgeable about what happens in business. And, when you open that business you have been dreaming of, you will have stronger skills to help you do just that.
Managing a business is one of the hardest things to do well. Mostly, this is because so few people get the proper training to put them on the right path to success. A small business owner or other entrepreneurs hoping to build and grow a business need the tools and know-how to use them. The training can provide a good start for those with the goal of entrepreneurship.
Need help getting started? Intercoast is here to help. With certifications and an associate degree in applied sciences available in business administration, we may be the option you are looking for.
Get in touch today to take your first steps toward your goals.