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Cheers to Entrepreneurs and their Small Businesses!

The week of April 29th – May 5th is National Small Business Week!  This is the week that entrepreneurs of small businesses are nationally celebrated.  This year’s award ceremony will be held in Washington, D.C. where achievements, like the Small Business Person of the Year, will be announced.

The Small Business Development Center  at the University of Pittsburgh, in conjunction with the national event, will be honoring 2 local award winning businesses at the C3 event being held on May 3rd.  Recipients will be recognized for the hard work that led them to success within their business.

So what can a small business owner do in order to scale up their businesses?  Here are the main takeaways for success:

  • Follow your business plan and goals: As a business owner, the business plan is essential before making any major changes in your short and long term operation. Do not be hesitant to change a business function if the market shifts, change is typically necessary when thinking about growth.
  • Develop your brand: Having an established brand increases value of the company and the goods and/or services it provides. Branding is a unique element of your company’s offerings that will differentiate your products and services from those of your competitors.
  • Be realistic: do you have the capacity or ability to ensure sustainable growth?Scaling up in business requires more space, more staff, more equipment, and most importantly more money. Thoughtful planning is the key!
  • Have the right people in place: Besides thinking about financing, operations, and marketing, think about human capital and your current employees. The question of if you would benefit more from internal or external growth. You may want to hire new staff members depending on the necessary skills you need to succeed. You may also invest in training for your current employees which could increase loyalty among the company and its workers.
  • Invest in reliable technology and security for your business: Information systems and technology are rapidly changing. If your company cannot keep up with development of technology then you may find yourself stuck, not being able to move forward. As far as cyber security goes, if you do not invest in a system that can be updated regularly then your company could potentially be attacked or hacked into.

Being an entrepreneur and owning a business is not for everyone, but if you have the fortitude and the heart, you could accomplish your dreams! Take the necessary time to make sure you are ready to sustainably grow your company and be successful in doing so!