More Than Just Money: Starting a Business That Matters

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Making money is the primary objective when it comes to business; if you’re not turning a profit then you eventually start losing money and your venture simply cannot continue. This means that regardless of what your company does, it needs to be successful and you need to be making those sales to keep your finances in order and keep moving forward. However, business doesn’t have to be solely about making money, chances are there were other reasons aside from profit that motivated you into becoming an entrpreneur, and there are lots of reasons other than cold hard cash why you’ll want to succeed in what you do. Here are some of the ways that you can start, or continue to run a business that matters- it’s more than just a stream of income.

Start a business that genuinely helps others

First things first, if you’re yet to start up your company and are looking for ideas, why not consider a business that helps people in some way? Of course, every type of company should be answering a question or providing some kind of solution, however why not start a business that genuinely does good in some way? Maybe it could be in health or social care, it could be in the medical or research field or it could involve working with children in some way. There are lots of ways you can make money and run a successful service while providing vital services or products that others will really get use out of. You don’t need to sell to millionaires or charge a fortune to do well, reasonably priced services or products that most people can afford will actually make what you sell more accessible and you’re likely to attract a wider audience anyway.

Make it more eco friendly

As well as or instead of starting a business that helps people, you could start a venture that helps the environment in some way. There are lots of ways to go about this, from cruelty free beauty products to vegan food restaurants, you could start a Fairtrade coffee shop or come up with environmental solutions such as renewable energy. Even if your company is in no way linked to the environment, you can still take huge steps in reducing the damage you cause- it’s big businesses that are responsible for much of the pollution and damage caused to the earth. Recycle correctly, reduce your single use plastics, reduce the amount of water you use and try and limit the pollution you create. Even within your shop you could choose sustainable materials to fit it out, or make use of second hand racks and rails which will prevent older (but still usable ones) ending up in landfill. You could decorate using low VOC paints and reduce the amount of power you use by turning off lights and computers at night or when they’re not in use. There are plenty of ways your business can either make a positive difference to the environment, or at the very least reduce the damaging impact that it has on the planet especially in comparison to other businesses.

Keep your employees happy

Your employees spend a huge part of their days, weeks and lives in general working for your company. If you want to make a positive impact in the world, improving their working conditions and keeping them happy is a small thing you can do which is well within their control. Provide them with a safe and comfortable place to work, make your shop, office or whatever premises you own pleasant and decent to spend time in. Offer incentives and rewards for their hard work, and give praise when it’s due. Something as simple as a gift voucher for your best salesperson that year or free lunch now and again for your employees can make them feel valued. One thing worth taking into consideration is that home based workers have been shown to be happier and healthier, so if any of your employees work a computer job that could be done from home, give them the option of working from home at least on some days of the week. The lack of commute and more flexible working day can massively reduce stress and for the right kind of person, home based working is absolutely ideal. Don’t overwork your employees, if you need to then outsource some areas even if it’s temporarily over busy periods; for example you could use a virtual office service. One of the most important things to do as a business owner is to listen to your employees. Be an approachable boss that they feel that they can come to and speak to about work related issues. Do this and you’re likely to pick up things like bullying and harassment, or even problems within your company that you had overlooked. Even if your business can’t change the whole world, by being good to your workers you can certainly improve the world for them.

Utilise self development

Finally, being a business owner gives you so many chances for self development. It allows you to learn more about your niche, and learn more about yourself too. Always take the opportunity to learn more, whether it’s formal academic courses or attending lectures from high flyers in your field. Being the best person you can and building success is always an important reason why people want to start a business, so don’t fall into a rut once you start doing well and resting on your laurels. Continue pushing forward and learning all you can.

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