Successful Businesses Checklist: 5 Key Attributes to Adopt

May 23, 2023

With over 2.5 million businesses operating in Australia, success is never guaranteed. Something new business owners often ask is: what’s so special about those that do make it past the infamous first 2 years?

Although every business operates differently, we notice trends in the attributes of those that become successful. Consistently maintaining the right balance of identity, innovation and culture seems to be the key to success, but it isn’t that simple.

Here are 5 key attributes we see in successful businesses:

1. A strong brand identity

You’ve probably heard about brand identity before, but what does it mean? Identity is fundamentally about differentiation. Your business competes against thousands of others every day, so making it stand out is tricky yet vital.

You should define a unique brand identity before creating any marketing materials. Brainstorm what makes you special with a multi-disciplinary team of executives. The more varied insights, the better. Outline your USPs and how you want to be perceived by your audience.

Once you’ve built your identity, you can start to communicate a clear and consistent message that resonates with your target market. Maintaining this across all channels – from posts on your social media to the customer service representatives – is one of the essential traits of successful companies.

2. Consistent and high-quality customer service

Once your identity is secured, you can start to think about how you interact with customers at a one-to-one level. As well as being consistent with your marketing, getting this right ensures customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Depending on your brand, you should aim to provide excellent customer service at every touchpoint, whether it’s through phone, email, chat, or in-person interactions. Train your agents to be helpful, responsive and polite.

Customer service is the most common touchpoint for customers to become frustrated. Despite negative connotations, it’s also the easiest place to turn your worst customer into your best. Get this aspect right to maintain your great brand identity across the customer lifecycle.

3. Continuous innovation

Adapting to changing market trends is a key attribute that will keep you ahead of competitors. We often see business owners get so caught up on what worked well before that they don’t notice the market changing all around them. That might be the single most detrimental attitude for a new business.

Technology is the obvious place to start. If you aren’t staying on top of current trends, you can’t be sure you’re offering the best solution to your customers. Encourage innovation and creativity within your organisation to develop new and better ways of doing things.

Alongside tech, consumer needs are constantly changing. While societal wants and needs develop, so should your offering. You must proactively monitor consumer trends and evaluate your products to ensure you’re meeting those needs.

4. Strong relationships

We’ve focussed on your customers so far – because they are the most important person to your brand – but great relationships with suppliers, partners, and other stakeholders in the industry are also crucial business success factors.

Treat everyone in your network with respect and transparency. Work collaboratively with them to achieve common goals. Be proactive in identifying potential areas of conflict, and always aim to resolve them in a constructive and mutually beneficial way.

Your connections are the backbone of your business, and strong relationships lead to a great brand reputation across the industry. That is something we always see in successful businesses.

5. A positive and productive culture

The last key attribute we see in successful businesses is a culture that works well for their goals and brand identity. While this looks different for different businesses, the right culture fosters employee happiness, motivation, and retention.

If your ideal employees want flexibility and remote working, create a transparent and trustful culture. If diversity is the most important factor in your hiring process, maintain a culture of inclusivity.

Whatever your priorities, create a work environment that is supportive, inclusive, and empowering for employees. Reward employee contributions and provide opportunities for growth and development. Finally, promote a healthy work-life balance.

For business success, engage an adviser

Partnering with a business adviser such as Saab makes it easy to work out where you’re strengths and weaknesses are. You may need a virtual board of advisers or a virtual CFO. Your business strategy might need an overhaul, or you could need assistance with new business acquisitions.

Whatever your challenges are, Saab’s advisers work alongside your teams to create the best chance at business success. Get in touch to book a meeting or find out more about our business advisory services.