Personal Attributes

Personal interests

Your business should suit your skills, personality and lifestyle and be sufficiently challenging enough to hold your interest. You are more likely to succeed if there is a good match between your business venture and your skills, interests and motivations.Think about why you’re going into business. For most people it’s a combination of many factors including:

  • a desire to make money;
  • greater autonomy and freedom;
  • an opportunity to work at something they enjoy doing; or
  • the prospect of building an enterprise they can eventually pass on to their children.

If you haven’t decided what type of business you will operate, what are you passionate about that could be a business opportunity?

Avoid the trap of going into a business that may be perfect for someone else, but not for you. A business selling a product that your family uses, recommends and loves may be a good choice. However, the business still needs to be viable and provide adequate income to meet your needs and those of your family.

Family support and assistance

Life in small business can be inspiring, exciting and fun, but on the down side, it can be lonely, frustrating, stressful and risky. It may involve risk to your personal assets, relationships, reputation and some would say, risk to your sanity.

It can involve longer hours and more problems than you anticipated, the disappointment of losing sales, and fluctuating income and money worries.

To run a successful business you need to have the support of your family. Often they’ll be the ones who pitch in to get something done, who you bounce ideas off and the ones who help with administrative and clerical support.

Before embarking on your new business discuss it with your partner, children and so on. Make sure that everyone is prepared for the highs and lows of running a business.

Good physical health

Starting and running a business can be physically and emotionally taxing. In the initial stages it is likely that you will be responsible for every aspect of the business including:

  • marketing and sales;
  • accounts and procurement; and
  • supplying the product or service.

Running a business can be demanding and stressful so you need to make sure that you have the physical and emotional ability to cope. Make sure that you realistically plan how you will operate your business and ensure you can meet the challenges of owning your own business. Many business owners can burn out after only a few years of being in business. To avoid burnout manage your hours and ensure that you take time off to refresh.

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Successful business operators are self-starters, they have the commitment and self-discipline to organise themselves and get things done. To succeed in business, you are likely to need a whole range of personal qualities or attributes such as:

  • commitment, focus and self-discipline
  • drive, ambition and initiative
  • perseverance, tenacity and staying power
  • flexibility and adaptability
  • willingness to work hard and to learn new skills
  • ability to handle stress and plan for holidays
  • prepared to work long hours
  • the physical and mental stamina to keep going

Perhaps the most important aspect of running a business is to have staying power.

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What's next...

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Related Information

Checklist to view:
Business Starters Checklist

Business guides to view:
Process Strategy
People Strategy


Our free Business Basics workshop will guide you through all the steps involved with establishing and running your own business.