Effective entrepreneurs have the initiative, determination and passion to see their dreams to fruition, but if you are so focused on what you do in your business you miss the most important things your customers need from you, when trends change. Changing trends are highlighted by trade associations, trade magazines, books, seminars and conferences.
Develop “soft” skills to cope with long hours, hard work, stress, risk-taking, strategy-setting and the ability to build, lead and manage a team. A start-up will have you involved in more than your own technical expertise.
Consider procurement and buying – including tendering, managing contracts, stock control and inventory planning. Your enterprise requires finance, marketing, promotion, sales, customer service, legal, administration, personnel, organisation and tracking competitors to succeed. Know when to delegate, recruit and outsource these.
Is the provider accredited?
Accreditation means a high calibre of lecturers and a certificate that will benefit your graduates and company by the value-add of the training, and the certificate on the wall, website or your CVs.
How is the training provider brand regarded?
Look beyond feedback from satisfied clients posted on websites, for unsolicited comments. Ask your network in the industry. Has the provider shown consistent results? Are they relevant and well-established in their field?
“Lecturing students on the Wits Plus programmes is exciting, challenging, with a deeper resonance. Input from the class makes the subjects more interesting as they are relevant to the real life context,” says Chris Callaghan, Management Lecturer at Wits Plus.
Can we afford it?
Entrepreneurs invest spare funds back into your businesses, but the long-term benefit of training and studying could prevent costly business mistakes. Research proven benefits of training and developing staff include:
- Increased productivity
- Increased efficiency and financial gains
- Increased leverage of the potential and diversity among employees
- Greater capacity for expansion
- Boosted employee morale, greater sense of self-worth, dignity and well-being
- Decreased need for supervision
- Reduced employee turnover
Building a more efficient, effective and highly motivated team, enhances your company’s competitive position.
Is it in line with time and needs?
Consider the big picture – few entrepreneurs have free time, but part-time classes on weeknights or Saturdays are popular ways to engage with experts and peers. Asynchronous flexi-time options include correspondence or distance courses with strong online support. Even bring a training provider on site to run courses to directly address a need.
Once the choice of training provider has been made it is important to find a work-life-family balance so that the process is sustainable. As energising as working synergistically with other like-minded achievers is, especially with social media to keep in touch; without effective time-management; burn-out and disappointment is possible.
When problems arise in other areas of your life, you want an approachable administration that will treat you as a valued client and find supportive ways to retain you, rather than quoting rule-books about non-refundable deposits.
As a business owner, take time to plan for training, to sharpen your readiness to respond to the marketplace. Overall success is more likely from an upskilled, well-trained motivated staff ready to adopt and use advances in technology.
Visit Wits Plus if you are wanting to upskill and grow your knowledge base.