What Does It Take to Build a Winning Organization?

Champions and winners come in all shapes and sizes, and they can be found in every industry. Ask anyone who’s been at the helm of a successful enterprise about how they got to the top and they’ll all tell you the same thing: It starts with you. So, before you draw up the plans for your building or start laying the bricks for its foundation, ask yourself if you’ve got your priorities in order.

If you haven’t yet seen the Pete’s Tips page, check it out; because this post is meant to be a companion. However, where my tips tell you what to do, this post will tell you how to do it.

Save Your Money
Most businesses fail because they run out of money. Why? Because of a lack of planning and foresight.

Unless you’ve already made more money than you know what to do with, don’t go spending like there’s no tomorrow. Doubtless, starting a business is going to incur some unforeseen expenses, so you’ll always need to have a little something stashed away in the event of an emergency. Anything from a permit you didn’t know you needed to a pipe bursting before a grand opening can put a dent in your wallet and sink your ship before it sets sail — but that won’t happen if you’re smart about it.

Rest Only When Necessary
“Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration.” – Thomas Edison

Today, people praise successful businessmen like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates as geniuses for their success as much as for the way they literally changed the world. However, if you dig deep enough and read about them, you’ll see that these men are only extraordinary in one way: They outworked everybody else.

If you want to be successful in anything, you need to be up early and in bed late, honing your craft or developing your business model during the hours in between. It’s nice to a have novel idea — people have them every day — but your ideas don’t get you as far as sweat and dedication.

Be a Leader, Not a Boss
If you employ people, in order to get them to work toward your vision you have to get them to believe in you first!

If your employees hear you barking orders and making demands, their work will be the product of fear, not inspiration, which means it won’t be very good. But, if you pick up a broom and help them sweep or grab a plate and bring it to a table, they’ll see that you’re in the trenches with them and act accordingly.

Keep Things in Perspective
Remember, your product needs to solve a problem, satisfy a need, or provide a service in order for it to bring you success.

A lot of entrepreneurs fall short because they get too wrapped up in what they want to achieve for themselves. That’s fine, but remember no one is going to pay you so you can realize your dreams. Success is a two-way street, and the customer must always come first!

Understand that this isn’t a list of inspirational platitudes meant to light a fire in your belly — this is a list of tried-and-true methods that has kept countless dreams alive and who knows how many businesses afloat.