Small business owners share top traits needed for success – like being hard-working |  City & Business |  Finance

Small business owners share top traits needed for success – like being hard-working | City & Business | Finance

Small business owners share top traits needed for success – like being hard-working |  City & Business |  Finance

Business owners believe you need passion, relentlessness, and a willingness to take risks, to survive the cut-throat world of being an entrepreneur. A poll of 500 SME owners and sole traders also found having self-belief, determination, and an ability to sell, are all crucial for success.

Being hard-working (48 percent), motivated (44 percent), and organized (42 percent) were the top three personality traits you need, according to those polled.

Career expert Sarah Berry, who has spent more than 30 years analyzing the personality traits of successful business owners, also said sales skills, a sense of purpose, and a willingness to take action are key – along with resilience, adaptability, and flexibility.

She said: “Unless you take action, you won’t do anything. Any action is better than no action.

“People often say “I’m worried about making a mistake”. That’s not really important because you’ve got to take action, even if it doesn’t turn out how you want it to.

“You can always change, and you’ll get there in the end.”

The research was commissioned by AXA UK to mark the launch of its Startup Angel Competition, which is supporting small businesses by giving them the chance to win £25,000 worth of funding, along with mentoring.

It also revealed a potential untapped source of opportunity for small British businesses, with 27 percent of SME owners and sole traders claiming to have a million-pound business idea – but don’t know how to make it a reality.

And 88 percent of those said this idea is linked to the industry they’re working in.

Sarah Berry added: “People tend to start their own business or make drastic career decisions when they are in a position of pain.

“We often talk about these decisions as coming from a positive place, like “I want to be my own boss”, and the benefits that that statement entails.

“What we should really be doing is confronting this pain. Pains like “I don’t have enough time”, “I’m feeling burned-out”, or “I don’t feel good about some of the elements of the corporate world”.”

The survey paints a positive picture of the UK economy from the perspective of small business owners, with 77 percent believing that starting their small business was one of the best decisions they have ever made.

However, with hindsight, 35 percent of SMEs say they don’t regret not starting their business any earlier than when they did – due to learning more about the job they are doing (30 percent), and taking the time to save up capital ( 26 percent).

It also emerged that despite the economic uncertainty, 66 percent remained upbeat about the future of their business, and 58 percent felt they had achieved their main business goal.

The main opportunities for the next 12 months are seen as clients returning as the economy stabilizes (21 percent), introducing new products or services (20 percent), and acquiring new domestic clients (19 percent).

But the biggest challenges for their business include inflation (31 percent), increasing fuel and energy costs (24 percent), and rising costs of materials (20 percent).

As a result, the top safeguarding measures businesses polled, via OnePoll, have in place include additional personal savings (43 percent), savings from their business (37 percent), and business insurance (30 percent).

Deepak Soni, director of SME business insurance for AXA UK, said: “This year continues to present challenges for SMEs, with inflation a growing concern.

“However, it’s encouraging to see two-thirds of those we surveyed feel upbeat about their business prospects – and this has increased by almost five per cent from last year.

“SMEs prove year on year how tenacious and determined they can be, so it comes as no surprise that being hardworking and motivated are the top skills needed for success.

“With self-belief moving closer to the top of required skills, it’s essential that we rally around business owners and support their growth and development.

“With this in mind, I’m proud to see the AXA Startup Angel Competition in its third year as we search for another six deserving businesses to support with invaluable mentorship from some of Britain’s best entrepreneurs, as well as 12 months of business insurance. ”