14 Small Business Management Tips for Successful Entrepreneurs

14 Small Business Management Tips for Successful Entrepreneurs

Effective small business management is like a multi-dimensional Jenga game, with many moving parts constantly jockeying for position. With guidance from these 14+ expert-level small business management tips, however, you’ll be well-positioned to achieve entrepreneurship and small business management success.

Streamline Day-to-day Operations

Successful small business management includes making day-to-day operations more efficient so you can focus on your larger goals. If you’re searching for useful resources, a small business management course, eBooks and small business management software programs are available.

Sometimes, however, the brightest, shiniest new product isn’t the best choice. Instead, follow the time-honored 80/20 rule of getting results, says renowned sales training expert Brian Tracy, an acknowledged business management authority.

The 80/20 rule (also called the Pareto Principle), states that 20 percent of your activities will garner 80 percent of the results. So, focus on the 10 or 20 percent of activities that will most positively impact your business. Although they’re often the most difficult and complex tasks, they pack the most value. 

Don’t give into the temptation to get the small jobs done. That behavior will keep reinforcing itself, and you’ll be repeatedly mired in small stuff while the big opportunities remain just out of reach. 

Revamp Inventory Management Systems

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Meeting your small business inventory management needs is an ongoing challenge. Maybe you haven’t found the magic formula that keeps the shelves stocked while not having excess widgets on hand. Perhaps you’re faced with limited storage space, or the on-hand inventory sometimes doesn’t gel with the numbers. 

Buy an Inventory Management Tool 

To help solve these problems, look for updated inventory management software for small business. Purchase an app that can provide real-time data with reduced manual inputs. Ensure that the app easily integrates with your existing business management software, and is scalable as your business grows.

This excerpt from an Insightful Accountant article summarizes the return you’ll receive from your software investment. “Real-time visibility will help to plan out the right amount of inventory required for demand, purchase orders and sales.” And, by confirming that your product deliveries have the correct counts, you’ll be ideally positioned to verify the accuracy of your stock on hand.

Manage Your Employees

A well-trained employee who’s on board with your mission is worth their weight in gold. So, invest the resources to get that new employee up to speed with your company’s systems and infrastructure. 

Thoroughly Train Your New Hires

Even if everyone is swamped with work, resist the urge to banish your new employee to a vacant desk with the company operations manual. Instead, arrange a full training schedule with plenty of one-on-one time. If you’ll handle the training, be prepared for a short-term additional workload.

By thoroughly training your new employee, they can better understand their job functions and the company culture. And, helping them to learn their job may help to decrease the chances that they’ll become a turnover statistic.

Once employees have completed the training, encourage them to be largely autonomous. Identify ways employees can contact you without throwing your own workday off track. To facilitate collaboration with a group of employees, purchase a project management software program that serves as a both a project tracker and virtual gathering spot.

Delegate Work and Get More Done

Although you’d probably like to stay hands-on with every part of your company, that’s rarely the most efficient way of doing business. That was certainly the case with Gene Marks and the Marks Group, a well-known technology consulting firm. Started in 1994 with Gene and his dad, the company was cooking along with Gene’s father bringing in the sales and Gene providing client service.

When Gene’s father passed away, Gene attempted to be a one-man show, but soon realized it wasn’t realistic. So, he hired several employees, and shortly had that “light bulb” moment. “I’ve learned that you can make a lot more money when you have other people doing it for you.”

Fortunately for the Marks Group, Gene had another epiphany: he had been doing work for which he was rather ill suited. So, he made some targeted hires, and watched his business take off. “I just sort of learned the hard way: focus on what you do best, and delegate the rest.”

Manage Your Business’ Finances

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Keeping a handle on your company’s finances means managing many moving parts. However, two main themes are in play: You want to minimize your expenses and maximize profits, and obtain affordable financing for further investment. Jared Hecht, the CEO of the Fundera small business loan marketplace, offers recommendations for both situations.

Keep Your Fixed Expenses Down

Regardless of your company’s focus or business stage, Hecht stresses that you should keep your business flexible in 2020. So, decrease your long-term commitments, even if that move results in slightly less profits. 

For an example, Hecht cites a subscription-linked software service that offers lower rates with an extended contract. Although that’s an appealing offer, you’ll likely incur a hefty penalty if you must cancel the service because you must reign in your costs.

The Marks Group also took some dramatic steps to reduce its overhead. First, Gene Marks gave up his office lease, and traded his expensive landline for a super-cheap Internet-based phone service. He also eliminated his computer server, and transferred all his files to the cloud. And, he switched to a virtual workforce.

During the Great Recession of 2008, the Marks Group never suffered a financial loss. Gene Marks knows his cost-saving moves were key in producing that desirable outcome. “Cutting down overhead really gives you that peace of mind. If your overhead is low, you can make pricing decisions that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to make.”

Apply for Business Financing (When You Don’t Need It)

If you’ve been considering a business loan or other business financing vehicle, Jared Hecht recommends that you do it when your financials are in good shape. Lenders want to see a thriving business that wants extra cash for investment in the company – not a loan for basic operating expenses.

With that said, don’t rush through your loan application on a whim. Instead, consider more flexible financing options, such as a line of credit or other financial vehicle that gives you funding approval but allows you to leave the funding untouched until you actually need it. By applying now, though, you can lock in a desirable interest rate and terms.

Keep Your Payment Processing Costs Down

Profits can take a big hit thanks to fees associated with accepting credit card payments from customers. Take a look at the number of cashless purchases being conducted in your business and what you’re paying to process those payments, then explore whether or not there’s a more cost-efficient alternative.

One example of a merchant that took this step is Brett Woods of JeepSwag.com, who saved $1,200 when he switched to a better payment processor.

“I always suspected that I was overpaying a bit on credit card processing,” said. So, he connected with Payment Depot, a membership-based payments processor to see if he could lower his costs.

“It was really neat to see that they [Payment Depot] could compare my old statements, and really show me upfront how much money I was going to save by switching,” Brett added.

Being a small business, I try to make every dollar count. And The $1,200 I save with Payment Depot, I can put into marketing and help grow the business and turn that into more profit.

Effective Time Management

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As a creative entrepreneur, you’re likely juggling multiple projects and responsibilities. Here are two tactics that can help you to keep your focus where it counts.

Automate Your Operations

If you feel like you’re running on a hamster wheel, bouncing from one “must do” business task to another, it’s time to boost your efficiency and decrease your stress level. In other words, find small business management apps that will take over much of the burden and free you up for more important work. Because some apps require payment up front, weigh the software’s cost against the time you’ll save later on.

Turn off the Distractions 

As a busy entrepreneur, you’re always looking for ways to better serve your clients (and get new ones, of course). To accomplish those goals, you feel compelled to always maintain a mobile and online presence. However, remember that each time you initiate or respond to a call or message, you become distracted from your current project, and have to refocus your attention – multiple times a day. 

So, physically turn off your devices. Schedule specific email and message check-in times, and schedule regular posts in batches. Finally, use an online tool that structures your workday, and prevents you from accessing your messages except at specific times.

Using Technology to Manage Your Business

Technology is playing ever-increasing role in small business management dynamics. This helpful business.com article provides two tech-related small business management tips that can enhance your 2020 business operations.

Tighten Up Cybersecurity Defenses

As businesses of all sizes increase their integrated operations capabilities, they also become more vulnerable to cyberattacks. In fact, small businesses are victims of 61% of cyberattacks. A “small” hack’s average cost is $86,500, says Kaspersky Labs, a leading Internet security company. 

To minimize your business’ cybersecurity risks, always perform recommended software updates. Show your employees how to spot phishers and malware. Ensure that your Point of Sale (POS) uses end-to-end encryption software that protects your business and your customer. And, if you can afford an IT expert consultation, do it sooner rather than later.

Get on Board with Telehealthcare  

Employees’ doctor’s appointments can easily put a crimp in your daily small business management routine. A simple doctor’s appointment can result in a half-day off work, stopping that employee’s productivity in its tracks.

With the increased availability of telehealth services, however, your employees can see an online doctor, get a targeted treatment plan and prescriptions, and be back on the job within less than half an hour. 

Improve Marketing and Sales Programs

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Well-designed marketing and sales programs go hand-in-hand. An effective marketing program brings your product or service to the right target market, and showcases the item’s benefits to potential customers. 

Next, your salespeople guide the prospect through the sales process, ideally culminating in a mutually beneficial sales decision. Because both processes are always evolving, here are two expert tips to help you stay competitive. 


Successfully marketing your B2B product or service requires a balanced approach and thorough knowledge of your target market. Plus, you’ve likely got lots of competition, so you must stay abreast of 2020 marketing trends

Fine-Tune Your Content Marketing

You can never go wrong by providing quality articles, blog posts, and other features for your business’ website. However, clients want businesses to add more video and interactive content, along with augmented reality and virtual reality components. By 2023, these emerging technologies are expected to morph into a $160 billion industry. So far, most businesses using these new technologies have been very satisfied with the results. 

For more perspective, know that 70 percent of B2B buyers gain purchase-based information through videos. And, Google currently ranks video content higher than text content. So, video should remain a vital part of your content marketing program.


Sometimes, your sales program just needs a creative reboot. So, view this go-to sales tactic from Stephanie Burns. She’s the accomplished owner of the online female entrepreneurs’ resource Chic-CEO.com, and she’s also a ForbesWomen contributor.

Create Limited-Access Purchase Windows

Rather than allow customers to buy an always-available product when they’re ready, create a sense of urgency by introducing a product with limited availability. For example, one memorable promotion partnered jewelry retailer Mejuri and flower delivery business Floom in the all-important pre-Valentine’s Day period. 

Together, the companies marketed a limited-edition combo that featured three floral bouquets paired with a Mejuri diamond. This wildly successful product offering required a coordinated pre-launch marketing plan.

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