No matter if you're an electrician, mechanic, accountant or surgeon, you have a specific set of tools to help you complete the task at hand. What about entrepreneurs? Do we have our own set of tools to help save time, make a living or run an efficient business? We definitely do.
Here are five tools that every entrepreneur absolutely needs to achieve success.
1. A Mirror
If you've ever been an employee in the real world, you probably remember those unsettling performance evaluations. While it was nerving at the time, there was one advantage. You knew what areas to focus on for improvement in the future. That's one luxury that an entrepreneur, business leader or executive has. But there is one way to fix that: a mirror.
A mirror is one of the most powerful tools you can have. A mirror can help improve you in communication and articulation -- both are important in how you express ideas and lead. A mirror can also improve your look. That's not saying you have to be Dapper Dan, but as a leader, you should at least be presentable when meeting clients, investors or customers. And, when times get tough, take a long, hard look in the mirror and figure out how to make the appropriate changes.
2. Your Favorite Gadget
Whether it's a laptop, smartphone or tablet, an entrepreneur never leaves home without his or her favorite gadget. It's a great way to jot down notes on Evernote, keep networking on social media through the Buffer app and LinkedIn or just take a breather and listen to your favorite music. Yes. Gadgets are really important.
So what else can you achieve while on the go? You can keep track of time with Make Some Time or Bart; do some bookkeeping with You Need a Budget; grow sales with Infusionsoft; work with your team in Basecamp; or use Keynote to create some killer content.
3. A Support System
Despite what you may think, there is no such thing as a lone wolf in the entrepreneurial world. You need someone to bounce ideas off of. You need someone to keep you grounded. You need someone who is experienced or skilled in an area that you're not familiar with. And you need someone to have a beer with when you're stressed out. Still think you can do it on your own? Remember that you have to deal with mentors, contractors, vendors and partners at some point.
And if it's any consolation, even the greatest entrepreneurs had someone to help them along the way. Steve Jobs had Steve Wozniak. Bill Gates had Paul Allen. Twitter was the product of Jack Dorsey, Evan Williams, Biz Stone and Noah Glass. Sometimes you just can't make it on your on.
4. A Notepad
What do Leonardo da Vinci Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, Thomas Edison, John D. Rockefeller, George Lucas and Richard Branson all have in common? They were all fans of pocket notebooks.
But it's the 21st century. Can't you just write down your thoughts on a mobile device? Sure, but there's something more personal and instant about writing down your thoughts. But even if you want to just use your smartphone for taking notes, the idea remains the same. Capture your thoughts immediately, have your own system, take notes all of the time and go back and look over your notes. You never know when you'll come across an idea that sparks inspiration.
Whether you're working from home or within an office, you never know what will come out of a brainstorming session. If you don't recall, that's how Twitter came about. And, as I've already mentioned, writing down your thoughts is one of the best ways to get your creative juices flowing. That's why IdeaPaint is so awesome.
Instead of investing in a whiteboard, just purchase this dry-erase paint to convert any surface into a creative workplace that can be erased. We've done this at our office as well; it's also environmentally friendly. And there's an eBook called Planning for Collaboration to give you ideas on how to make a collaborative environment.