Dos and don’ts of running a successful business

“Good management is the art of making problems so interesting and their solutions so constructive that everyone wants to get to work and deal with them.” Paul Hawken

Along with an outstanding product or service and a reasonable budget, the key to running a successful business is having efficient management in place. Without a backbone, the business won’t be able to stand up. That said, it has to be the right kind of management to ensure the business flourishes and goes from strength to strength.

Every manager wants a productive, happy and efficient workforce but equally most employees want to work for a productive, happy and efficient business.

Working in the insolvency sector, we see various businesses face problems that have been the result of a director’s actions. Whether deliberate or not, this has caused ongoing issues that could have been rectified earlier and even stopped the business becoming insolvent.

Here is a brief look at the dos and don’ts of a director:


  • Employ a good team and delegate. You can’t be in control of everything all the time.

  • Keep yourself motivated so the rest of the team is motivated

  • Make time, as and when appropriate, to listen to your team or departments. Know how to manage people as well as a business. An employee may have an idea that could save the business money or have discovered a solution to a problem. It’s no good if they can’t communicate this to you. Therefore...

  • Hold regular board and team meetings using a reliable system. With so many online platforms like Skype and GoToMeeting (usually offering various free trials), organising meetings wherever you are has never been easier. Of course, face to face appointments are also important. 

  • Get a good grip on cash flow and general day to day expenses. Ultimately, it’s your responsibility. 

  • Use your business judgement. Learn from mistakes, notice emerging trends, spot new competitors and keep tabs on the market.

  • Take a proper holiday every now and then. Of course this is easier said than done as there’s probably never a ‘quiet’ time but you’ll come back feeling refreshed, refocused and ready to get stuck in.


  • Bury your head in the sand when things get tough. Act quickly and try to resolve each problem before the situation becomes too big to handle. You could be made personally liable for debt if you haven’t acted appropriately as a director.

  • Ignore the financial side of the business and leave it to someone else. You are ultimately responsible for the business, so you need to know what the margins, profits, balance sheets and cash flow looks like.

  • Forget that mistakes will happen, again and again. Learn from them, work out ways to solve the problems and move on. If you’re not sure what to do next, seek advice where possible.

Anna-Lisa Searle writes for turnaround and insolvency specialist firm, KSA Group, and is a contributor to

This information should not be interpreted as financial advice. Commercial mortgage rates are subject to change. Speak to our advisors for a mortgage illustration.