‘Business’ is a broad term that encompasses many aspects of money earned through enterprise. Before you decide what specific career path to take, it is a good idea to get thorough knowledge of the basics. Here is a guide to some of the essential skills you will need to take your business career forward.
• Financial Management – One of the most important parts of the success of a business is sound financial management. This is the control and implementation of a business’s expenditure and income in order to maximize profits and growth.
• Negotiation – Negotiating the best deals and terms for a contract takes skill, and it’s when done well, it can make a massive difference to the success of a business. Good negotiation provides both parties with an advantage; for example, if a company does not want to pay for a service, one option to negotiate could be the swapping of services.
• Marketing – The products and services a business supplies need to be promoted in order to increase sales, and marketing is the art of communicating and interacting with customers, and raising brand awareness through a variety of channels. Examples include using social media, running advertising campaigns and writing a company blog.
• Operations Management – Ensuring the smooth and efficient running of business practices is one of the most essential components of a successful business. It includes the management of staff, budgets, and operations of tasks within specific projects. A qualification, such as an MS in Operations Management, is something that will impress any employer as well as giving you confidence in your abilities.
• Networking – While it is essential to have solid business skills, the success of a business also depends upon having good contacts in the industry. This can help a business get the best deals, put them in touch with new clients and influencers in the field. Networking can be on a one to one basis, such as arranging a meeting with a person who can help in some way, or it could be at industry events.
• Leadership – Every successful business owner shows good leadership skills, as good management of people equals a willing workforce that is all working towards the same goals. Qualities of a good leader include having clear goals and being able to coordinate people and strategies in order to achieve them. Character is a large part of what makes a good leader. In order to get the best out of people, leaders should be role models, have integrity and be able to listen and relate to others well.
If you intend to pursue a career in business, having the skills and qualities discussed will give you a head start. As well as gaining qualifications, experience is also essential. If you are employed, see what aspects of your job involve some of these essential business skills, and see if you can increase the responsibilities of your role. All experience counts, and will look favorable on your resume should you have an interview for a new job.