I run a successful retail business that has grown over the years. Most of my life, all through my teen years, I watched my single mom handle her job and our home in a manner that left me wondering if she had superpowers. My mother had a way of going about her day and responsibilities effortlessly and making everyday count.
As a business owner, I have found ways to incorporate into my business, the lessons I learned from observing my mom as a kid. Most of the lessons I learned from my mom are simple daily activities that become habits over time.
Here are three of the most important lessons and how they have helped me become more successful as a business owner:
1. Time management: Handling a home, social commitments and a full-time job can be quite daunting. Watching my mom handled all the demanding aspects of her life as a working mom taught me the importance of time management. When you run a business, you find yourself wearing many hats, and when not properly managed you may see yourself missing deadlines which could also lead to lost revenue. My mother used a list to control her day to day activities. She would list what she needed to do and write down a time frame along with each task. Making lists of what I want to do each day helps me better target my goals. Another plus is striking things off the list gives you a sense of accomplishment.
2. Interpersonal savvy: In business, we call this customer relation. From the way my mom related to her co-workers, employees and even her boss, I have seen how important a good rapport can better improve a working environment. I learned how to handle my customers, how to listen to them and figure out the best way to solve their problem. I learned this from watching my mom work with not just her co-workers but those around, her ability to focus on a person and their needs is a good lesson to apply to a business and have continued to help me run a successful business.
3. Priorities: My mom could have a thousand things to do and still find time for what is essential. In running a business, you sometimes find yourself overtasking and trying to fix so many things at a time. You’re busy but not productive. There’s a difference. When the pressure is high, or the tasks are too much, trying to handle everything might prove futile and essential things might be missed. The best part of having priorities is that you get to handle what is important first. Knowing when to push and when to hold helps you build up core values which is an essential part of running a business.