Entrepreneurial Tit-bits: Take Care of the ‘Small Things’

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Somehow, many of us believe that succeeding in our calling and life in general is just about doing the ‘big things’. In reality life doesn’t work that way. The most successful people are very good at and do take care of the small things, first. That helps them take care of the ‘big things’ easier and smarter.

The military is an example of an institution that is developed to take care of a very difficult responsibility of a society: defence. To succeed the men and officers are trained under physically and mentally tough conditions. They are trained to lead others and execute very difficult tasks. Yet, they start training from what a person who wants to be a warrior will consider most mundane, such as making their beds first thing in the  morning; putting clothes away; boot-polishing; toilet-cleaning, etc.

The reason they start with all these and maintain same all through the career is that order and predictability enforces discipline and saves time, effort and lives when it really matters. And without taking care of the small things, the big things will become more expensive and more difficult to handle and achieve.

So what are some of the little things you should learn to take care of as a routine that will help you achieve the bigger objectives?

Make your bed first thing in the morning too! And generally keep your private and working areas as well as your person clean. It is refreshing, creates order and makes you feel good and ready for the day.

Physical exercise: Many of us underestimate the positive benefits of exercises to our overall well-being. It is extremely important that, depending on the right variables, you engage in a routine exercises.

Create a routine: Routines help us not just economically and socially, but biologically and psychologically. When people know our routines they generally respect them and that can help our efficiency. Other than the realities of exceptions in life, setting things like when to wake up (most successful people wake up early in the morning irrespective of their activities that day.); first activities of the day; when we retire for the day; when we keep time for our families and stay away from business, etc., all help us create predictability and order as well as maintain our sanity. More importantly, it gives us a sense of control in our affairs. And that is extremely important in handling the big issues.

Let people know your routine: In our environment, you can easily lose control of your affairs due to others bumping into you when you are at other things or not ready for them. If someone bumps into you when you are not ready, take the time to explain at least that part of your routine and explain the proper way you can both address such issues next time. With time you will be surprised how everyone that is important to you knows when to make contact with you and how do it appropriately.

Call someone and stay connected! Make out an appropriate time to call a few people and say hello to them. Be sincere, nice, courteous, and where appropriate, funny! Beyond phone calls, ensure you stay connected with others for absolutely no business reason than well-meaning. Whenever you need to visit with someone, make an appointment and do not take more than reasonable of their time. If you wish to spend an hour with them, let them know and ensure that it doesn’t interrupt their other activities. Your consideration will be appreciated and reciprocated.

Give out personal gifts: Where you are not breaking any laws, make it a habit to keep small gift items with you. Give them out as you need to people as you may be able to. They don’t have to be expensive as people generally understand what you can afford and it is gesture that is important. Do not do this because you want to ask for something in return! Do it because you sincerely appreciate their relationships with you. Pens, perfumes, stationery, paperweights, etc. can all be appreciated by your associates.

Keep the right company: It is important to keep company of the right people. You learn from them; you get information; you are also able to provide your support when required by others who create value out of it.

Take a pen with you, please! I have seen where senior executives and young entrepreneurs do not have pens to sign documents at some important meeting and had ask the next guy for theirs! That may suggest that you are not serious. Or worse, it may indicate lack of presence of mind. Both are bad for you. Please, take a pen with you!

Relax! The more we do, the more we should be able to make out time to stay off. This helps maintain our productivity levels.


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