I have been working in the small business environment for over 20 years, although I have worked for larger corporations also, most of my career in the last two decades has been spent in small business. Many times people might feel limited when working for a small business. I feel quite differently about this opportunity. In a small business you get to where a lot of hats. This means that you can do more than one job at a time.
I have always been an entrepreneur, even at the age of 11 years old. I had my first business, a lawn mowing service. I would scour the neighborhood, and door knock and ask for the business. I was limited only by the range that I could push my dad’s old craftsman mower. At one time I had over 5 clients and for an 11 year old that is not bad. So you are probably asking “where am I going with this?”
Every small business should seek out team members with an entrepreneurial nature. These are the types that are totally engaged in their job. They come to work and offer new ideas and think of more efficient ways to handle processes. These are the types of people that help a small business blossom.
As a manager and executive in small businesses, I have been able to develop a strong skill set in leadership, marketing and operations. That entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in my daily work ethic. I am not just a sales manager or an operations manager. I am able to focus on the whole operation day after day and identify and make changes as needed. This is paramount in a small business and absolutely necessary for success. Of course, in a larger corporate environment, my duties might shrink a bit. But the ability to understand where another manager is coming from, or why a process could be different in a complementary department, will be easily communicated based on my personal experience.
I am not going to call myself a guru of small business, but over my career I have seen a lot of success and made a lot of mistakes. I have learned from each of these experiences and they add to my personal value. It affords me the opportunity to see processes and transactions at a smaller level, to really identify the strengths and weaknesses. If I had learned business in a bigger environment, I would not have the same level of exposure.
Over the next few weeks I am going to identify some of these skills and talk about how they apply at any level of business. We will take a deeper look into how entrepreneurial skills translate well into a career in business on any level large corporations, small business management and start ups. I look forward to hearing what you think.