26 Lessons from a 26 yo CEO #1
Forbes Women: Young Entrepreneur Council 7/11 Enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
On April 25th I turned 26, and a few weeks later my Web Marketing agency turned two. What started as a single person mini-business, has turned into a 26 person global Web Marketing firm in just two short years. I’ve been immensely grateful for the opportunities life has presented me with. And, as I look forward to the future, it would only be fair to look back as well. Here are 26 lessons I have learned as a young entrepreneur & CEO – Shama Kabani:
1. A written Vision of what you want your company to look like in 3 years is important. It isn’t enough to envision your goals in your mind. You must have your Vision & Action Plan on paper. This helps to define & clarify it. Every decision you make, ask yourself: does this help me get closer to my vision?
2. Listen to your Clients. When we started, we were only offering Social Media consulting services. But, clients quickly demanded more. We eventually ended up serving as their Web-Marketing department. The marketplace will tell you what it needs. You only have to listen, and then deliver a great solution that meets their needs.
3. Half the job is Keeping up. The other half is going twice as fast. The pace of technology will only continue to quicken. It doesn’t matter what your industry is, you have to keep up, in order to offer the latest, greatest.
4. It’s Value, not Price. Always judge your product, adding features, staff based on the “value” – something or someone brings to the table. Price is relative.
5. Only hire people who have a Passion for your Product. In a small, starting business, passion is a must in every position. Hire people who are driven to do well, believe in your vision & want your business to succeed.
6. If you must fire someone, be graceful & professional about it. This is the worst part of being a CEO. It is tough to let people go, but for the greater good of the business, sometimes it must be done. It doesn’t matter if you are firing or being fired, but don’t burn bridges. Things, people change.
7. Forgive & Forget. Things happen. People change. You can’t move forward in business – or in life – if you can’t forgive and move on.
8. Cash Flow is crucial. This is especially true when your just starting, when the economy is slow, or if you are growing quickly. Work with clients to get payments upfront, as much as possible or in a quick turn.
9. Balance is over-rated. Aim for joy. When work is fun, you don’t feel the need to take as many breaks, escapes. However, balance your life, so you are happy with your mix – family, friends, hobbies, etc.
[#10-26 Continued in Premium Content]