Business success tip: Learn from an Uber driver how to adjust and adapt

Technically, chauffeurs or Uber drivers are both drivers. They drive cars for someone.

But they are different. The difference is in their attitudes.

Chauffeurs are used to a predictable job. Same passengers. Almost always familiar routes. Predictable working hours. Their jobs are mostly covered by certainty.

Against that, Uber drivers’ job is highly unpredictable. They have to go anywhere from anywhere at a very short notice. No familiar routes.

They encounter passengers of all varieties, temperaments and moods. An Uber driver operates amidst a reality of uncertainty.

This develops in them a habit of being always ready for anything. An Uber driver gets used to charting his way by reading maps all the time. He befriends unfamiliarity of terrain. He can correct course on the way. He adjusts to changing situation rapidly. He develops an attitude of positivity cheerfully welcoming new passengers every hour every day. He learns setting and achieving daily goals of completing a certain number of rides or collecting certain amount of fare.

But in today’s times, an Uber driver has a huge advantage as compared to a traditional chauffeur. If the chauffeur does not prepare himself for being flexible to embrace changes of different types, he may face extinction. He may lose relevance. Even though both the drivers have same technical skills, an Uber driver is more equipped to embrace the uncertain future and thrive. He is able to adjust and adapt.

In business also, regardless of whether we are an employee or an employer, having “ready for anything” attitude is more helpful in today’s uncertain times. The terrain is changing fast. We can’t be sure competition may come from where or when. We may have to slow down somewhere or suddenly increase speed. Next turn may come anytime. We may also have to take a U-turn. We must constantly watch the map.

Develop an Uber driver’s attitude. It will help a smoother drive into future.

Business growth tip: Handle employees with care

To build and grow a strong business, we must remember this simple fact: A business is run by people. People are human beings. Human beings are emotional beings. They work most efficiently when they are happy. When they are motivated. When they enjoy their work.
We should help them to work efficiently, to be happy at work.
About motivation, it is believed that money is the only motivator for employees. This is not entirely true. Money motivates, but temporarily. Not always. To be motivated, many other things are required in addition to money. Here are some:
Everyone expects to be respected. Employees who are respected by their bosses and colleagues work confidently. Create a culture of mutual respect in your company. We should not insult anybody. If we need to give some feedback, we must give in private. Don’t fire people in front of others. Being rude to employees is bad. Maintain dignity of labor.
Concern and care
We must remember that employees are as human as we are. They, too, have their own life, own problems, dreams, challenges, limitations and frustrations. We must take care of them and be concerned about them.
Employees prefer to work where they enjoy working. Good facilities are a need. We must provide good working conditions and facilities as prevailing in our industry.
Proper salary
Yes. Salary is important. It should match with the industry standard. It should be paid on time and must be revised from time to time. Remember the old saying: if we give peanuts, we will only get monkeys. Generally, monkeys can’t help in growing a business.
Timely appraisals and increments
It is necessary to review the work of the employees periodically and give them feedback about what is good and what needs improvement. Appraisals must be done at least once a year or more. Based on the appraisal, salaries of the employees must be revised and promotions affected, if  appropriate. Most businesses ignore appraisals. They delay increments as much as possible. This is demotivating for the employees.
Remember. In today’s times, employees may be available in abundance, but good employees are scarce. Good employees are in high demand. We can grow our business only if we have good employees working in our business.
We must care for them to retain them. Losing good employees will be a loss to the business.

How hard should an entrepreneur work?

We have heard that entrepreneur must work hard.

How hard?
First, how many hours of work should an entrepreneur put in?
The simple answer is: Entrepreneurs must work more hours than any of their employees. If your office hours are, say, 9 to 5, and every employee is expected to work for at least 8 hours a day. Now, if you are also looking for an 8-hour work day for yourself, entrepreneurship is not for you. You should give up business and take up a job with fixed hours.
If you feel that you pay your employees so they should come early to work for you you can come late or leave early everyday, it is a very bad idea. You have a liberty to do that, but such businesses, where the owner does not put in much work generally don’t do much.
A business owner must work equal or more hours than his employees. Undoubtedly. Remember, a general can’t relax when his soldiers are battling on the field.
Secondly, an entrepreneur must be available for his/her business 24×7.
See, it is not about working 24×7. You must ensure balance between work and other areas of life for yourself and for your team. It is about being available when your business needs you. You can’t shut yourself down.
If everyday you wait for evening so that you can “have some time for yourself after a hard day’s work”, you should not be an entrepreneur. For a true entrepreneur, there is no “hard” day of work.
Yes, you can party. But, you must be available and accessible to your troops if they are fighting it out.
Some entrepreneurs are victims of maxims like “We should do smart work and not hard work”.
As a boss, we should give tension to others and not take tension on ourselves.
Such dialogues can’t help us build businesses.
You can’t build a business by proxy.
Entrepreneurship is not a fixed time job. It is a full-time job.

A great business requires work.

Hard work.

A great business can’t be built looking at a clock.

Or a calendar.

Which business succeeds? Practical Tips to Grow Your Small Business

A business which can make its customers’ life better has a high chance of success.

Every business provides some product or service. The customer buys that product or service to satisfy some of her needs. By that, she expects some improvement in her life. Even if your business is B2B where your customer is another business, there also, the customer will continue buying only if your product or service solves some of its business problems or satisfies some of its needs.

Here are some examples:
If you have a restaurant and you customers love your food or service or the ambience, if they feel your charges are reasonable as per the value received by them, they will come again and again. They will also give good reviews about you. All this because you are giving them some moments of happiness. You are making their life better.

If you are a retail shop or showroom, and if customers love your range of goods, or you provide them a lot of choice or they feel confidence in your dealings and they trust the quality of your goods or service, if they can be assured of your fair prices. you are taking some worries related to shopping out of their lives. They love your business for making their life easier. They will make your shop a part of their life. They will continue buying from you regularly. Your retail business is making your customers’ life better.

If you are a doctor and you help patients get better faster, if you help them live a normal, healthy life, if they can trust you for giving them the right advice for their health, if you don’t take advantage of their vulnerability, if you don’t cheat them by prescribing unnecessary tests or medicines, then you fulfill a very important need in their lives. That is an example of making people’s life better.

If you are a builder of residential projects, and you deliver the same amenities, facilities and conveniences to the buyers of residences as you had promised, they will look at you with respect. You have made their life better through your work.

In B2B, suppose you supply some raw material, machinery, spare parts or services to your manufacturing customers. If your products are of reliable quality, your rates are reasonable and your service is prompt, the customer business can plan its own operations on the guarantee provided by your business. That is a sure step towards making your customers’ life better.

In every business or profession, if the product or service provided by you makes your customers’ life better, solves their problems and satisfies their needs, your business will surely succeed.

– Sanjay Shah (SME Business Coach, Author: “Business Management Simplified”)