The BEST Business Tips I’ve received

Ange Connor

The stats on small businesses failing are pretty high, or so I’m told. And have been told multiple times since taking the plunge and starting my own business.  Thankfully, after recently celebrating my first 12 months in business, I’m still here!

I’ve reflected quite a lot on the last twelve months; what I’ve done well, what I would do differently and the mistakes I’ve made. Each time I keep coming back to the advice I was given when I was first starting out by people that I admire and respect in the business world.

Here’s the top 5 pieces of advice that I’ve lived by in my first year of business:

  1. Don’t spend money on advertising, focus on talking to clients and building relationships – Ross Clennett
    In all honesty I didn’t really have the dollars to spend on lavish advertising campaigns anyway so taking this piece of advice on board was easy. Focussing on building relationships with clients has definitely paid off for me. The cost of a phone call to speak directly with a potential customer has been much more cost effective and I’ve been able to identify the types of customers I want to work with, who share my values and vision for recruitment and human resources.
  2. Know what you’re not good at and get help from an expert  – Andrew Douglas
    Sounds simple right? It took me a little while to implement this one and I confess I learnt the hard way! I wasted many hours trying to take care of aspects of the business that I really had no idea about. Because I had no idea about them it took me double, or quite possibly triple the time it would take an expert, only to produce a less than satisfactory result. The lesson I learnt: My time was better invested doing what I was awesome at – building the business and delivering Recruitment & HR Services. The Outcome: I’ve developed a network of experts who understand my business and can call on when I need help with Accounting, Marketing, IT etc.
  3. Keep expenses to a minimum and don’t over commit yourself financially – Bill Wood
    My previous positions have been about focussing on the income, the billings, sales, sales pipeline; so this was a change in mind shift for me. Of course I’m still focussed on the income however I have managed to resist the temptation to have the best of everything from a flashy new office to a state of the art website and instead I’m working towards those over time. As a perfectionist this was hard to swallow at times but by not over committing to expenses I didn’t have the additional pressure of having huge financial commitments to meet.
  4. Eat the frog – Graham McMahon
    This one is about stopping the procrastination and getting on and making the hard decisions; the decisions that I’d want to put off or leave to see how the situation played out or worry about at a later date. What actually happened was that putting off these decisions consumed so much of my head space and became serious distractions. When I did just get on and “Eat the Frog” it was incredible how clear my focus was and how much easier it was to get on with doing what I should have been doing all along. It helps to have someone tell you to get on and just Eat the Frog.
  5. Sell yourself – Dad & Mum
    I’ve been extremely lucky to have such a supportive family and Dad & Mum have always encouraged me to “sell myself” throughout my career. What they meant by selling myself was believing in myself. Whether it was that promotion that I wanted to go for or the pay rise I wanted to negotiate, they always reminded me to sell myself. For me if I genuinely believe in something I am much more successful at influencing and negotiating the outcome I desire. There have been times when I have doubted my decisions and when in doubt I always come back to reflecting on what it is I have to offer. It’s this belief that keeps me going through the ups and downs.

I’m grateful for these words of wisdom and that these people took the time to stop and offer their advice. It’s definitely helped to shape my business for the better.

About The Author
Ange Connor

Ange is the Founder and Director of Inspire HQ, one of regional Victoria’s leading recruitment, human resource (HR) and careers agencies. Ange is an ‘ideas’ person and a ‘big picture’ thinker. She loves to challenge the status quo – in fact, that’s how Inspire HQ began.

Ange has supported hundreds of businesses across Ballarat and regional Victoria to attract, engage, motivate, develop and retain their greatest assets; their people. Ange’s unyielding passion and invaluable knowledge of the recruitment and HR industry ensures she delivers the best solutions for her clients.

Ange has held various board positions and regularly volunteers her time to share her industry and market knowledge. She was recently a Councillor for the Victoria and Tasmania region of the Recruitment Consulting and Staffing Association (RCSA) of Australia and New Zealand, and she is a current Board Director of the Committee for Ballarat.

For more useful information, follow Ange on LinkedIn.

Hand drawn outline of mobile phone, laptop, cup of tea and book from a birdseye view.
Leave A Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want to get in touch

What would happen if you spent just one hour focusing on your people strategy? Contact us to book your free one hour Inspire HQ People Hour; we’ll help you assess how to build a better workplace.
Megan and Ange are sitting in the Inspire HQ boardroom talking to a man and showing him a report with DiSC in the background.
Contact Us