One of the best things about working at Pickevent is the wide range of skills on show in the office. Working here, I’ve come to realise that there are certain skills that can really help you run a business, some of which are obvious, some less so.
Standing out as an entrepreneur is getting harder and harder. The entrepreneur market is bustling; there are almost 400 million entrepreneurs worldwide, with that number growing year on year. In such a crowded market, it can be difficult to stand out for the right reasons. I’ve listed five skills that I think can really help you make a good impression.
After an event, you will be sending emails to potential clients, investors, and partners. Having impeccable grammar and spelling can give your emails the edge.
The best websites to learn: If you use a good word processor or email programme that has built-in spellcheck, you can get away with murder. However, there are still things you will need to know, particularly the difference between there/they’re/their, your/you’re, and its/it’s (all links lead to the Grammar Monster – if there are any areas of grammar you are unsure of, this website can help!). The exercises on this site can help too.
A professional typist can normally manage over 60 words per minute. While you don’t need to be able to transcribe to be a successful entrepreneur, it will speed up your day if you can maintain a relatively quick typing speed. If your hands can’t keep up with your mind, you’ll struggle to keep up with a demanding schedule.
The best websites to learn: If you’re a slow typist, then start learning touch typing correctly, as having the correct technique will help you in the long run. This is very much ‘do as I say, not as I do’, though; personally, I don’t use the home keys, and I maintain a good typing speed regardless. If you’re set in your ways and a relatively fast typist, consider working on speeding up by playing touch typing games online instead.
There will be times when you have to make something look good; whether it’s a social media site, a business card, or a logo, you need to be able to make informed decisions about how things look. The design choices your company make reflect on you, so you want to be secure in your design knowledge.
The best websites to learn: If you want to read some great articles about the basics of design, try this article from Just Creative; it links to many relevant articles. If you want to learn more about web design, then try HackDesign.
According to this survey in The Guardian, many adults see teaching children code as more important than teaching them foreign languages. If your business ideas are based in technology, learning the basics of code is important, even if you’re not going to be working on the development. The truth is, when it’s all hands on deck, you may be the one making basic changes.
The best websites to learn: Want to learn the basics of one of the up-and-coming new styles of code? Pickevent’s bizdev manager Bill swears that Rails for Zombies for learning the basics of Ruby-On-Rails code. If Ruby-On-Rails isn’t for you, then try LearnStreet for other types of code (they offer a Ruby-On-Rails course, too!)
Though code is arguably more important, speaking a foreign language is a real asset if your company has international aspirations. Pickevent currently has offices in London and Valencia, and the team has members who can speak Spanish, Portuguese, German, Italian and more.
The best websites to learn: If you’re a beginner or intermediate in French, Spanish, German, Italian or Portuguese, then try DuoLingo. The gamification of language is an incredible idea, and if you can convince your friends to join, you’ll end up getting very competitive! I found Duolingo last week in this Life Hack article, and in the time since I’ve been addicted.
There are doubtless countless other skills that can help you excel as an entrepreneur. What skill would you say is invaluable for an entrepreneur?