4 skills that will set you apart in business

Anyone can set up their own company, but it takes a certain type of person to climb to the very top in the business arena. Following are four skills that I believe help to set people apart as successful entrepreneurs. If you are planning to start your own company, it’s worth asking yourself if you already have these abilities or you need to work on them.

1) Excellent communication

Being an effective business-person is about more than having great ideas. To achieve your goals, you must also be a convincing communicator. As well as delivering persuasive presentations to potential investors or customers, you will need to use language that motivates and energises the team you put together around you. Don’t be put off if your communication skills aren’t quite up-to-scratch right now; this is something you can work on over time – and the more experience you have, the more confident and effective you are likely to be when it comes to expressing your ideas. It’s important to realise that many of the best business communicators were lacking in confidence and finesse when they first started out as entrepreneurs.

2) Foresight

Market conditions are continually changing, so to achieve lasting success with your company, you must have the foresight required to anticipate new trends and developments. For this reason, successful businesspeople tend to be natural innovators. They are curious about what lies ahead and are always looking for ways to improve their companies and to address the challenges not just of the present, but also of the future. This allows them to create dynamic, flexible businesses that are much more robust in the face of change. In contrast, those who are reluctant to move with the times are likely to get left behind by their more forward-looking competitors.

3) The ability to discover and nurture talent

No matter how talented businesspeople are, they can’t keep their companies running singlehandedly. All savvy entrepreneurs understand that to make a success of their companies, they must put together a team of skilled and dedicated people. As well as discovering talented individuals, this involves nurturing people’s skills to enable them to fulfil their potential. To do this, it is necessary to offer appropriate training and mentoring, give people attractive career development opportunities and reward hard work and success. Those who fail to understand the significance of discovering and harnessing talent can quickly run into problems.

4) Strong organisation

Effective organisation skills are also essential. Knowing how to plan and prioritise tasks helps entrepreneurs to meet important deadlines and to stay on top of their often hectic workloads. Without a strong time management strategy in place, businesspeople can find it impossible to deliver products or services on time and to the necessary standards – and their stress levels can soar as a result.

With decades of experience as an entrepreneur, Chris Niarchos at the Cobra Group has detailed knowledge of the skills and traits that people need in order to thrive in the business world.

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