We often think that running a business is something that must always be struggled for. We consider it to be a privilege, and something that can easily fail if the correct attention is not placed in the right areas. Of course, both points are true to an extent, but does that mean that only the most accomplished of people could ever hope of dipping their toes into the business pool? How does experience and education develop in the modern day? Is business still a hidden art that must be learned through great risk and peril, akin to a martial arts novice training on a mountain top, or can anyone learn essential business skills with the right access to resources?
We would like to think that providing the wisdom to succeed can help you not only enjoy your business life more, but give you more to think about and potentially avoid mistakes that others seem to walk in to. In other words, yes, we believe that with the right resources, most people can learn valuable business skills. After all, talent and privilege is different to skill and hard work.
Consider our advice below:
Business blogs offer some of the best curated opinion-pieces, statistical analysis and news that you can find. Of course, perhaps there are some that are the most popular, such as the business journal of your most favorite news source, or something dedicated such as the Financial Times or Forbes. But if you only view these sources, you’re missing out on a lot of grass-roots understanding and inspiration, featured by people who have a true understanding of their industry and wish to express it. It’s true that business journalists often have a great understanding and research deeply into their output before publication, but would you rather only listen to journalists, or those who have current experience in the business landscape? The correct answer should be ‘a mix of both.’
Business blogs are essential to a digestible daily understanding of business. An understanding of an idea can be boiled down to its grassroots and most essential point, helping you learn the idea without having to defer them yourself from elongated business case studies. However, those are essential to consider too. You can be almost certain that there’s rarely anything new under the sun, and that if your business is in a unique-feeling position, there have often been at least hundreds of businesses that have found themselves in a similar one worth paying attention to.
Business podcasts are essential to listen to. Give a few of them a try! With topics as serious and interesting as these, it’s essential to find hosts that you could listen to for hours without a sense of exhaustion. Playing these during your commuting hours or downtime could help you continually learn when you’re otherwise mindlessly occupied. There are many excellent podcasts out there. Look through the iTunes store business or financial categories, or perhaps browse through Spotify to see what could be streamed. You might be surprised.
But of course, you needn’t only listen to business podcasts. There are many excellent audiobooks out there to help you gain the digest of a full book in your car, or when working out at the gym. These might include topics that aren’t directly business manuals, but still hold some water. For example, perhaps listening to the memoirs or autobiographies of a major business figurehead in retirement can help you gain some insight only gleaned from a lifetime of work and understanding. Perhaps listening to industry-led podcasts can help you gain a perspective on the industry. For example, if you’re joining a marketing team for a video-game developer, it might be worth listening to the IGN podcast, or the Giant Bombcast, both are regularly in the top 100 podcasts of any indexed listing.
There’s a wealth of audible information you can download for free, and it’s best not to take this for granted. You never know just what insights you might be given.
It’s essential to keep up to date. You might decide that a Twitter aggregate of accounts can be worthwhile to follow, but this just leads to an overtly busy timeline. Signing up to many RSS feeds from an RSS reader can help you assess when new articles go online, perhaps by certain writers from a publication that you enjoy, or perhaps when a new issue of your online newsstand is released. Many publications are offering digital conditions of their work, and this can also be worthwhile to read.
But these methods might be considered somewhat outdated. If you wish to get your internet marketing news in the most reliable manner, using resources such as the Amazon news services can bring. This can prevent you from having to collect everything yourself, because no matter how hard you try, you’ll never be able to truly collect all the worth around you and run a business at the same time, or fight to get your start. Sometimes help from the professionals can allow you to collate the most important news, and this can help you gain an advantage over those who do not use these services. Whatever you choose to do, it’s best to have it localized in one place, to prevent having to collect your information from way too many sources at one time. It can save you plenty of stress.
Of course, despite our previous words, finding the right consultant can often help you avoid plenty of problems from the offset. They are perhaps the most valid and unique tool you can use to help you out of your personal situation, be that a PR nightmare you’re experiencing as a small firm or when struggling with how best to structure your departments. These fees are often higher than other solutions, but none are as customized, as dedicated to results, and as personally responsible as these. For that, they are worth their weight in gold, and that can be incredibly important to keep in mind. A little consultation goes a long way, it seems.
Past Employment & Operational Results
Sometimes, the best place to look for advice and future insight is to reflect on your past. Have you worked in industries before, at a senior level? Did you see many of the moves made by those who managed you? Did you have somewhat of a broad view of the various roles and how they functioned? While this might not give you a complete view, do not discard your experience in the past. It could potentially help you consider things you wish to emulate and discard in your effort to help yourself as an employee.
It might be reading your past business journals or project plans that help you see where mistakes were made, or where your successes lay. The more experience you gain, the further context you will be able to apply to that situation. Consider how you might have conducted the same events or tasks if you were given them to deal with now. It might be that the result could have looked much different. This will only work for some industries of course. But those it does work for will likely be incredibly supported by this view of the past. For example, events and people management, financial handling, marketing outreach and a range of other possibilities will likely be helped by this viewpoint, and that can be a truly powerful thing.
You would be surprised just how many business lectures, events, expos and other forms of attendable organized functions are either free or very cheap to enter. This way you can gain contact with the businesses operating today, or hear experts speak about their previous experience or current operational efforts in the industry. It’s not hard to see how this can give you a sense of participation, and potentially help you learn more than beforehand. With an online presence and the ability to network both digitally and in person, you might find yourself making friends with those who are having real effects on the industry, or at least becoming somewhat familiar with them.
Network, network, networking can often not only help you boost your presence, but learn from others. There’s something about the integrated social functions of the online space and reaching out at events that helps curate content and bring people together. Who knows? You might gain insight that you would struggle to find elsewhere through this effort alone, and that can be quite an important thing to celebrate. It only takes a moment to look for events that you could attend, also. A simple browse online should bring up many in your city this year, be that for disparate celebrations. The annual women in business conference might be held near you, or perhaps industry-specific offerings. They can all have a positive effect.
With these tips, you’re sure to find the right resources to help you gain and retain your business confidence.