So you are an entrepreneur. Oh, you are planning on moving into the arena of becoming an entrepreneur? Either way, you are on that path, whether you are at the beginning or a ways in and experienced, right?
Some days, as you sit down at your desk or grab your first cup of coffee for the day, you wonder if you have all of the skills that you need for this thing call entrepreneurialism.
You especially feel that way on those really busy days, when you feel like your head is going to pop off with all of the things that you have to get done, some of which you are good at and some which you wonder why you are doing!
That's ok. You are normal! Now, let's talk about it a bit, shall we?
Our Concerns and Goals
Some of the concerns that we may have, when considering what is needed, as far as skill set for the entrepreneur, might include the following:
- concern that we don’t have the skills we need;
- concern that we cannot find the skills we need;
- ensuring that we have the skills, or
- ensuring that we have access to those who have the skills already.
Fortunately, we are going to cover these concerns and offer solutions or directions on how to find those solutions.
Those Four Areas for the Entrepreneur
There are more than four areas, but we are not aiming for being overloaded or overwhelmed, are we? I mean, after all, how much do we truly accomplish in that state? So, let’s keep it simple and start with the basics, even including things like understanding the meaning “brand” and what our brand is, before we start with our skill sets. But, I will save the in-depth discussion of brand definition for a later time. I am referencing it here so that you can add it to the list of important things to consider, in addition to your skills and resources.
Another area, to add to the list, before breaking this down into skills, is understanding what you need in your business website. By having a rough idea, even if your site is already perfectly developed, you will be able to understand what skill sets are needed, as we work through this short list.
Understanding your skill set (those skills that you possess) is one of the best places to start, even before going through these four essential skills needed for the entrepreneur.
Why isn’t that a separate section? Well, because I thought I would start with an example.
For example, I may personally possess many skills, but being a sales person is not necessarily one of them.
But, having the skills of a salesperson is basically a requirement for any entrepreneur.
For some of you, you already have this skill. And, it is likely a matter of refining the skill and getting better at what you already know how to do.
That probably goes without saying for any of the skills on this list!
For the rest of us, we have two options. We can either…
- learn how to sell (Yes, you ARE teachable!), or
- hire someone else or a team of experts to do it for us!
What you will notice, as you go through this article, is that those are basically the same two choices that every entrepreneur has, for those skills that are not a part of their natural skill set.
Fortunately, for those who are learning, there are many training programs available online and you can find some of them by Googling the topic. You can also find specific business coaches who can teach you, one-on-one, how to sell. As an example, I offer strategy coaching in areas other than selling. This is helpful coaching for any entrepreneur, with my extensive experience in business, but for selling, you may want to find a business coach who specializes in teaching you how to sell.15 min consultation to improve your strategy approach (no charge).
There are others, like me, who offer that one-on-one service, specifically for those of you who want to learn how to sell. Just be sure that you are specific about YOUR objectives (not the coach’s specific objectives) when you are requesting a consultation.
Not all of us were cut out to be bookkeepers or accountants. Personally, it is something in which I excel and I not only personally enjoy it (not wanting to share the task with an employee), but it is something for which others have hired me to perform for them, as entrepreneurs.
But, I find that when I talk to other entrepreneurs, that I am not the rule of thumb. Most entrepreneurs that I have spoken to prefer what? They prefer to outsource this task.
This is probably one of the first job roles that you should consider outsourcing. Just be sure to interview the accountant thoroughly. It is not recommended that you hire your accountant off of Fiverr (no offense to Fiverr).
Keep in mind that it is possible that your accountant will need to have access to your financial records and even possibly your bank and do you really want to hand that over to someone to whom you are only paying $5?
No, this is a place that you should consider amping up how much you pay someone; ensure that they really do know what they are doing; or, just do it yourself.
While it is possible to do it with something as simple as a spreadsheet system and your bank checkbook, you may want to consider investing in software like QuickBooks. After all, software like that can often times walk even the most uninformed bookkeeper through the basics.
Then, again, QuickBooks can often be daunting to those who do not favor the technical side of things. So, buyers beware! Be sure to Google reviews and thoughts and opinions from those who are very similar to you when it comes to skill sets.
A great article that covers some of the basics of bookkeeping for the entrepreneur is found here. It gives you a place to start, whether you outsource this task, or learn (continue to learn) the skill, yourself, as the entrepreneur.
The creativity category includes your writing, your additional skills, like graphical skills, video skills, etc. The sky is the limit on what could be included in the category of creativity.
For the most part, this is the primary area of expertise that you use for your blog. It is likely that you have this skill covered if you are an entrepreneur who already has a blog.
Unless you have already outsourced this task to a person or team, you are likely using that very creativity, as an entrepreneur, to create and share that creativity with your blog audience. If so, then kudos! Keep doing what you are doing!
Here is a tip that may help you, in the blog arena (a common place where your creativity is shared): 3 Steps to Creating Your Blog Plan.
For those of you who are looking to add things like video to your blog, here is an idea. It is one that I have used, as well, and now I am an affiliate: Video Maker FX for all of your quick, effective videos. Yes, I'm an affiliate, but I absolutely love this software! When it comes to the effective videos, It is definitely this software. The ROI (return-on-investment) is high (less time; better results)!
Other Skills Like Marketing, Social Media, and Technology
There are great technology bloggers out there who love what they do, but does that mean we all have that skill?
No. Not necessarily.
Personally, I have a background in technology. My answer, when interviewed and asked why I chose technology was “I don’t believe I chose technology. Instead, technology chose me.”
When you can answer in that way, related to your skill set or sets, you know you have pegged something that you are good at doing, as an entrepreneur.
Another area is marketing and social media marketing.
Many of us really enjoy connecting with our friends and associates on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn. But, does that mean that we are the ones who should be in charge of our own social media marketing? Not necessarily.
As with all of these skills, it is a matter of determining if it is something that we are already good at doing (and just need improvement), something that we want to learn how to do, or something that we want to outsource.
In addition to that initial assessment, we need to balance our time, both business and personal, and figure out if we should be doing that task or if we have the financial means to outsource the task.
In many cases, especially because we are entrepreneurs, we will need to consider outsourcing many of these tasks and roles, especially if we have the means. It may be (and often is!) that we will make more money if we focus on our moneymaking skill, as entrepreneurs, and outsource these other tasks.
Hey, who says you cannot return and step in on some of these tasks, even if you have hired someone to do it? I mean, if you enjoy it and it is your company, go for it!
For those of you looking for some help in the marketing, specifically the SEO (search engine optimization) area and web analytics, consider this aid in improving that area of skill set with this program by some friends of mine, which I highly recommend (and not just because I am an affiliate!): Dominate the Search Engines Using Webmaster Tools by LearntoBlog is a program that teaches you how to get better results in your search engine optimiations efforts. Yes, I am an affiliate, but like the other programs by LearntoBlog I've used it and can personally recommend it!
We started with a question of whether we had the skills or access to the skills that we need for the role of entrepreneur.
This is not a time to let your confidence wane. By no means!
However, it does not hurt to take an inventory and revitalize our business by taking that action, whether it is realizing that we already have what it takes or improving on our own skill set, or finding those who may be better at it than us.
Either way, it is a time to get moving, realizing that we are moving our business into a better place, and we will surely succeed, as a result.
How about, for one of your skill improvement activities, you consider the LearntoBlog 30 Days to SkyRocket Your Blog Results program?! Now there is an idea to move your forward, eh? :) Now only do I love the program, personally (it has changed my life!), but I went out to become an affiliate to support it and the ladies who developed this genius, life-changing product!