Staying current as a small business owner can be overwhelming. There are a number of ways to reduce this feeling while moving forward. Here are three tips to educate yourself and grow as a business owner.
1. Read articles in your field.
Credit card expert and Consumer Advocate, Beverly Harzog is well known as the go-to person on credit cards in her space. While she has a background as a CPA and also holds an MBA, she is constantly quoted in major media outlets and appears on TV because she stays current in her field. She knows that doing this is what keeps her expert status in tact and separates her from the rest. She stays up on the intricacies of the fine print associated with credit cards and can explain what that means for the consumer. Becoming a sought-after, trusted source takes a lot of work and requires you to keep abreast of all topics that pertain to your field. It also allows you to be seen as an authority which can allow you to command more money for your expertise.
2. Listen to Podcasts
Podcast are another way to gulp down content in effort to sharpen your saw in your field. Many podcasters release episodes shortly after recording them so the information is timely. They are also a convenient way to consume information and pick up plenty of tips for your business since you can still do other things while listening. So if you’re commuting to work, walking on the treadmill or just folding laundry, consider sneaking in some learning time. I personally do all three.
After recently listening to a podcast, I learned tips to handle email better. It has made a dramatic difference in how much time I spend answering them. The time I spent to set up a system and create canned responses, has freed up time for me to work on other aspects of my business.
3. Be Open to New Payment Options
When I was starting out, I didn’t know how to accept credit card payments. I spent the majority of my time honing, tweaking and practicing pitching podcasters and major media outlets, not spending time on how I received payment from my clients. This put me at a disadvantage. I figured out quickly that if I wanted to keep certain clients, I had to start accepting different payment options.
It kick-started my motivation to stay on top of trends like e-cash and crypto-currency so I can more readily acclimate to the ever-changing demands that come with owning a business. The learning curves aren’t as drastic this way. It feels like more of a pivot than a complete overhaul.
Taking steps to be informed about your field is a great way to expand your knowledge base, improve your business and even work more effectively. Consider reading articles, listening to podcasts and accepting different types of epayments to keep your business current.