Variety of clothes hanging on rack “What is the hardest thing about running a business?” This question will likely bring a wide range of answers. However there are many aspects of running a business that all entrepreneurs would agree they’ve had to go through at some point during the process of starting/running their business.

Making the transition. Many find it difficult to make the transition from entrepreneur to business owner. In the very beginning, you are completely starting from scratch. Your outlook and focus will be different during this stage than when you move to growing an existing operation. It is necessary to “switch gears” so you can move on to financial management, marketing, branding, etc.

Being a Strong Leader. Operating a business takes great leadership. Hiring and leading employees is an essential part of any business. A leader understands the importance of having smart and dedicated employees, how to recruit them and how to lead them. A leader not only has the ability to develop a vision for the future, but he or she can also communicate that vision. An ability to motivate others, resolve conflicts and delegate efficiently are key qualities of an effective leader.

Keeping Yourself Motivated. Running a business is very different from working at one. A business owner works long hours, weekends and vacations. Your energy, resources and health are constantly being tapped into. After a while, it is easy to let yourself forget why you started in the first place – what your end goals are. Remaining motivated is definitely a big challenge. It is up to you to find way to remind yourself what your vision and mission are.

Living a Balanced Life. Believe it or not, it is possible to find a well-balanced life as a small business owner. Many start a business to enjoy the greater things in life, but end up never enjoying those greater things because of running the business. Hiring individuals you can trust your vision with and being able to effectively delegate play a big part in being able to balance time between work and family.

Knowing How to Handle Money. Most businesses will experience ups and downs in revenue based on slow and busy months. This fluctuation means that being skilled in sustaining cash flow is very important; this is where having a strong business plan also comes into play. The ability to control bad debts, slow collection and when to expand are also required skills.

When starting out, it is important to be aware of what lending options you have. Many startups are categorized as high risk by traditional lending sources. Thankfully, providers like First American Merchant specialize in dealing with startups and specifically offer start up business cash advances. Knowing where to look for solutions to your financial needs takes skill and discernment.

Today is a great day to start!

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