Useful Skills Every New Business Owner Should Have

Being a business owner isn’t just about being a good leader. While leading by example, allocating your time appropriately, and being personable amongst your workforce is part of business success, it shouldn’t be the only skill you’re interested in right now. 

You need to be adaptable in what you can do, allowing you to apply yourself fully to the job at hand. That means investing in skills that help you run your company as a whole, including financial responsibility, customer service, and getting some admin experience under your belt. 

This takes time and a lot of practice, but the more you invest in your useful skill-building, the more manageable your role as a business owner is going to be. You won’t be rushed towards hiring, you won’t panic overtaking a risky move, and you’re far more likely to keep accurate records of your cash flow. 

If that sounds good to you, let’s get started on the skill checklist down below. Some may be useful to you right now, some may be useful in the future, and some may be skills you already comfortably have under your belt. 


Communicating is more than talking. It’s about taking your situation, who you’re talking to, and what you’re talking about into account as well. This means changing the way you communicate from time to time and being able to pinpoint when this change is needed. 

This takes a bit of practice, and you shouldn’t beat yourself up over times when you could have communicated in a more clear, succinct way. For the future, always approach a situation with what the person needs to know, and what could be helpful for them, and try to use emotional intelligence to respond in the best way for them. 

You should also take their facial expressions and body language into account, most of which can be read quite intuitively. Be sure to employ active listening while they’re speaking as well. 

A Clear Grasp of Numbers

If you understand the way the numbers move concerning your business’s profit margins, you’ll be able to handle your cash flow much more efficiently. You won’t be confused by the financial side of your company, you won’t need an ever-present accountant to make sense of the table for you, and you’ll be able to take the graph data into account when making your decisions. 

This clear grasp of the numbers demystifies what many business owners find to be the most confusing part of business leadership. Gaining confidence with cash handling is key to feeling like you’re in the right place, and it’ll certainly make filling out tax forms a lot easier come tax season! You can still hire an accountant if you want to, but you won’t need to make them a permanent member of the team.   


If you’re not empathetic, you’re never going to be able to see something from someone else’s point of view. That makes for a bad leader; you need multiple viewpoints to help inform your own! So try to brush up on this skill as you bring more and more people into the business, both customer and employee alike.

Empathy goes a long way in the business world. It ensures you have a good customer service manner, and it helps in keeping staff disputes to a minimum should they ever arise. After all, you know how other people are feeling, you know what they need, and you’re keen to find that practical solution that keeps everyone satisfied. 

Sales Ability

Selling your product, and indeed your business as a whole is quite the skill in and of itself. You need to be able to highlight the best features on both sides and provide service with a smile at the same time – that takes a bit of concentrated effort! 

Your sales ability is going to come naturally to you over time, but it’s best to garner as much experience in it as you can right now. You need to come across as a confident communicator, even if you’re not a natural-born salesperson, and you need to be able to identify what buttons to push to convince someone to buy. 

Often known as ‘persuasion’, the more you can pinpoint what piques a customer’s interest, the more sales you’re going to make. 

Proficiency in Microsoft Office

Microsoft Office has been the cornerstone of file organization since its inception in the early 90s. Seeing as we’re in 2024 now, the software has come a very long way while still finding itself on top! 

Getting to grips with the suite is a basic computer skill most of us know, but if you’re proficient in using Microsoft products, it’s going to be much easier to stay organized, and even automated in that organization. Once you master the latter, your data entry efforts won’t take up anywhere near as much time! 

Head online to to get started in your Microsoft Office training. Here you can brush up on those basic tips, but then rapidly expand your skill set and get the most out of programs like Word, Excel, and OneNote. 

Digital Marketing

Do you use social media to make your customer base aware of your new products and offers? Then you’ve already got some great digital marketing skills under your belt! However, you should also look into diversifying your methods to capture as much of the market’s attention as possible. 

Delve into your analytics to find out where to start (more on this below). When you know where the traffic is coming from and whether it matches up with your digital marketing efforts, you’re going to pick and choose your methods much more successfully. 

For example, you might find you get a lot of hits through search engine results, which means investing in SEO is a good way forward. This allows you to push yourself even further up the search engine rankings and become more relatable and informative to your audience. Keep on pushing! 

Understanding Analytics

Website analytics can tell you a lot of things. They’ll tell you how many hits you’re getting, where these hits are coming from, what pages are the most popular, and what keywords and searches people are using to find you. This is all golden information to have on hand, as it can be used to refine your website even closer to what your customer wants from it. 

You can access all of your metrics through features like Google Analytics, and even if you’re not sure about the information, you’ll be able to immediately see what’s in the green and what isn’t. However, if you look at your website analytics and find you don’t understand a word of them, start with a beginner’s guide like this


Do you know how to make a new connection in the business world? It’s not quite the formal affair you’ve been led to believe it is! That’s what puts a lot of people off; while you’ll still need to make an effort and keep things professional, networking is mostly about reaching out to the right people and striking up a conversation. Being friendly can take you far, and having a business card with all the right details on it can seal the deal when you’re face to face. 

This can be a very good skill to get under your belt, as it’s often who you know that makes you successful, but don’t pay too much mind to those who don’t reply. Much like every other relationship in your life, sometimes connections aren’t worth it, especially if you’re the only one putting in any of the hard work to get to know them! 


How much do you know about the world of digital security? Probably not very much – even in 2024 it’s a niche skill only a few people hold. However, when you’re a business owner, you should know the basics about keeping your online activity safe. 

Not only that but if you have a network server or a cloud server that’s accessible via the internet, you’re going to need to keep it under encryption lock and key. 

Just imagine how much of a disaster it could be if your data gets lost in a cyber attack. If someone gets into your banks who shouldn’t be there, they could unleash havoc by wiping data, stealing data, and eroding any protections you do have in place. 

Do You Have the Skills a Business Owner Needs?

Every new business owner has to invest in themself. The more skills you bring to the role, the easier your goals are going to feel to achieve. So make sure you’re always learning something new, and refining the talents you’ve long been proud of. 

It’s not often that we feel ourselves making progress, but when you can make use of the skills listed above, you’re going to see the effects of self-development in action. That’s going to be a great metric to track your overall business success by!