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The main habits of successful entrepreneurs

Columnist Dean Swanson says small business CEOs share their secrets to success.

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What is the most important habit that successful entrepreneurs practice? Brett Farmiloe, founder and CEO of Terkel, got insights from small-business owners into high-quality articles for brands. Here are some of the responses that he received.

Learning to make quick decisions. Making decisions too quickly can be just as harmful as not deciding at all. However, entrepreneurs should not get trapped in analysis paralysis and find themselves unable to make any decisions. Having the ability to quickly assess the situation and make a decision that is most likely to lead to success is extremely important for entrepreneurs. They must also be willing and able to change course if necessary. — Fiona Lee, Notta

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Being current with events in your industry. You will be better prepared for economic turmoil, industry developments, and your competition when you stay up to date on current topics. Subscribe to relevant newsletters, and take some time every morning to read your industry trade publications to stay on top of trends. Remember, many external factors can make or break your business's long-term success, so the more you are aware of the world around you and what's happening in your industry, the better you will set yourself up for success. — Mark Daoust, Quiet Light

Mastering conflict resolution. Conflict resolution is an undeniably crucial soft skill to create a professional experience that is successful, harmonious and inclusive. Disagreements are common and completely natural in any field. But when an entrepreneur demonstrates the ability to learn from these conflicts and make amends, it significantly contributes to his success. — Benoit Lacroix, Portmoni

Surrounding yourself with highly motivated people. We are the product of the five people we’re around the most. When you're an entrepreneur with a growth mindset, you should consider your “Top 5” wisely and choose to fill your life and personal network with highly motivated people. You're on the right track if you think they’re “better” than you. Surrounding yourself with positive, intelligent and mature people will naturally influence you to become a better version of yourself. Plus, if they’re entrepreneurs or high achievers within your industry, they’re bound to have a contact or two that will come in handy on your professional journey. — Fernando Lopez, Circuit


Listening when others speak. Ted Turner said that most successful people's habit is listening when others speak. It is a very smart habit to gain, not just for an entrepreneur, but for anyone who wants to be successful. Being a good listener can help you make more money, as you will be more open to suggestions and better able to think objectively about ideas. It can also help you make friends, as people will appreciate your ability to listen to them and your willingness to understand their point of view. — Sukanta Sekhar Das, CoinMarketBag

Communicating effectively and being consistent. My dad once told me I'd always have a job if I learned how to write and communicate. That advice always stuck with me, and I have come to find that communicating effectively and showing you are reliable are the two most valuable traits you can have in business. People want to do business with people they can count on, and they also want honesty and authenticity in their communications with you. You will be successful by remaining true to yourself, actively listening, and responding with relevant and valuable insights. — Chris B., Minuteman Press International

Using help from your network. As much as entrepreneurs want to do everything themselves — they shouldn't. Instead, they should ask their network for help. For example, a business owner could easily spend three hours researching which hiring platform is the easiest to use and provides the type of talent they're looking for, or they could call three friends in the recruiting or startup world and ask them for their advice. Your network has already researched and solved the problem you're faced with — all you have to do is reach out. — Breanne Millette, BISOULOVELY

Being persistent. If there is one characteristic that defines all successful entrepreneurs, it is bulldog persistence. Amid all the noise, distractions and failures, we persist; this is why we ultimately succeed. — John Lingnofski, Lingnofski Enterprises

Developing a positive attitude and perseverance. For any entrepreneur to succeed, they must have a positive attitude and perseverance. You must move forward despite all obstacles. Learn from your failures, adjust your business plan, stick to your core principles, and be patient. Hard work and perseverance will result in success. — Slava Khabovets, Nutri Marketplace

Demonstrating moral courage. The correct action is rarely the easy action. Making hard choices and enacting them is critical to successful entrepreneurship. Moral courage is like a muscle — the more it’s exercised, the easier it gets. Entrepreneurs serve the good of the company. You will have to let people go, disappoint vendors, and be candid with and go without clients. The hard choice now leads to greater success later. — Sam Rosenfeld, Verdigris/BrightFi

Dean Swanson is a volunteer Certified SCORE Mentor and former SCORE chapter chairman, district director and regional vice president for the North West Region.

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