The four verbal traits of a savvy small business owner Featured

9:01pm EDT September 27, 2011
The four verbal traits of a savvy small business owner

Let me start this post with a couple of concepts I have discovered over the years.

Concept #1

We are what we think.

Translation: The only thing that stands between you and your success as a person is your mind.

Concept #2

What we talk about comes about.

Translation: As a business leader (and human being) what you talk about on an ongoing basis is what controls your life. We are controlled by our positive or negative self-talk.

Truth: The true power we possess does not come from prestige or place in life; it comes from what we think and how we speak.

For the small business entrepreneur (and everyone else), true power comes from within.

With this being said, let’s dive into the four verbal traits of the savvy small business owner:

1. The savvy small business owner speaks increase into others.

In business, are you talking to your clients, customers, or teams in such a way that you build them up? Are you looking for fault or seeking out the good in those around you?

Is your strategy just about their “bottom line” or does it include ways that will help your clients to shine in all areas of their life? Are they made better because of their relationship with you — and is that because of the way in which you speak to and about them?

Turn that last question around and you are forced to ask yourself: “Is it just about my bottom line?”

The savvy small business person knows that speaking increase into others leads to a “win/win” situation for all parties involved.

2. The savvy small business owner does not gossip.

Number 2 follows Number 1.  Speaking increase builds up. Gossip tears down.

In business we must train our tongues to speak that which is positive. I am not talking about seeing the world and your leadership in it in a naive, simplified way. Business is complex. I get that.

What I am talking about is this:  A gossip is a person that habitually reveals personal or sensational facts about others. A business leader who gossips is creating rumors or reports of an intimate nature about a client, coworker or employee.

I know this sound like the antics of a high school teen, but you would be surprised by just how often this happens in the workplace — between adults — and leaders of organizations.

Things are hard enough in the business world today; do we really want to tear down our people and eventually our business with things that we should have put away years ago — like gossip?

In all ways, gossip is negative, therefore, the savvy small business owner does not gossip.

Here’s a tough one:

3. The savvy small business owner does not complain.

Some of the very same people who gossip at work are also some of the worst complainers.

You want instant power in your life and business? — stop complaining.

Remember Concept #2 above – What we talk about, comes about.

Who likes a complainer anyway?

Here's a harsh reality: Complaining is really taking the easy way out of a business related situation. It takes energy and action to encounter a problem without complaining, but the results are so much better and long lasting.

You cannot be ultimately successful and happy as a small business owner if you spend more time complaining than taking action.

The savvy business person knows that complaining brings everyone down, including himself/herself and their organization.

4. The savvy small business owner listens more than he/she speaks.

Sometimes (most times) the best things we can do as a business leader is to be quiet and listen.

Listen to your client as they describe their situation. Hear what they are saying — and not saying. This is true of the way we should listen to our employees and colleagues.

Your example of quiet listening is the very thing that lets your people know that you care. Everyone wants to be heard —it is a part of our very nature.

As the old adage goes, “God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason.”

The savvy small business owner knows that listening is the key to helping.

What verbal traits do you see as the most important for the small business owner? What am I missing? Share your thoughts, insights and experiences.

DeLores Pressley, Motivational Speaker and Personal Power Expert, is one of the most respected and sought-after experts on success, motivation, confidence and personal power. She is an international keynote speaker, author, life coach and the Founder of the Born Successful Institute and DeLores Pressley Worldwide. She helps individuals utilize personal power, increase confidence and live a life of significance. Her story has been touted in The Washington Post, Black Enterprise, First for Women, Essence, New York Daily News, Ebony and Marie Claire. She is a frequent media guest and has been interviewed on every major network: (ABC, NBC, CBS and FOX) including America’s top rated shows; OPRAH and Entertainment Tonight.

She is the author of Oh Yes You Can, Clean Out the Closet of Your Life and Believe in the Power of You. To book her as a speaker or coach, contact her office at 330.649.9809 or via email at or visit her site at