I am passionate about small business.  I honestly believe the health of our local economy is directly related to the health of our small business community.  As a result, I have abuilt a business, which focuses on meeting the needs of this community, and spending my spare time reading and reasearching what others think about small business and entreprenerus in general.

I recently ran across an article by Anthony Tjan, the CEO, Managing Partner and Founder of Cue Ball, a venture and early growth equity firm.  In the article he outlined three things every entrepreneur needs, but suggests those same three traits hold us back.

  • Perseverance – This isn’t easy, and it takes a certain amount of dedication and focus to get a business launched.  However, in the extreme, perseverance becomes stubbornness.  Sometimes you need to change course!  At Roundpeg, I started with the idea of teaching other managers what I know about team building.   Had I stubbornly stayed on that course, I would be out of business right now!  Instead, I adjusted direction, and began focusing on marketing services for other small business owners, because there was a market.  As Tjan says:

Be persistent in your vision when you are sure you are right and have some proof to back that up, but also acknowledge when you need help or redirection.

  • Controlling interest.  Your business is like a child.  In the early stages YOU need to be the one to do everything.  As the business grows, successful owners let go and delegate.  This is hard for us.  But if you want to build a business bigger then you, learn to delegate and let go!   In the last few weeks, I have been out of the office a lot.   Meeting with clients and prospects.  It would be impossible to focus on business development, if I didn’t have a great team back in the office who could get things done while I was gone.   From his article Tjan suggests:

Fast growing businesses quickly move beyond the ability of one person to manage without proper delegation, founders can unknowingly limit the start-up’s growth potential.

  • Team Loyalty – In small business relationships become personal, faster.   If you take care of your people you build an intensely loyal team.  And that loyalty fuels your growth. The challenge, as Tjan suggests is remembering the people you like, are not always the best fit for the jobs you need done.  As a result, business owners often wait too long to make a change.

So what I learned most from this article is that on top of all the other things I must be as a biz owner, I need to be a tight rope walker! Balancing my strengths to be sure they don’t become weaknesses.  What would you add to this list?