Motivational speaker and entrepreneurial  founder of Green & Blacks, Jo Fairley has compiled a list of key attributes for budding entrepreneurs:


•  Be prepared to work harder than you ever thought possible.  If you want to close the door on your work at 6 p.m., don't become an entrepreneur;  work for someone else.

•  Stay healthy and balanced.  On an aeroplane, they tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself before helping others.  It's the same with running a business:  unless you're fit and well, you can't take care of your business and your staff.  Walk everywhere (for fitness), do Yoga or Pilates to stay flexible - mentally as well as physically.  (As Yoga teachers stay:  'Flexible spine, flexible mind'.)

•  Stay on top of cashflow.  Avoid nasty surprises.  The not-opening-bank-statements approach (or not checking your on-line bank balance every day) doesn't work, in business - and there's no excuse with mobile phone apps

•  Work hard - but step away from the desk, too.  As Martha Stewart wrote in her excellent business book The Martha Rules, 'In business you need two tools:  a microscope and a telescope.  A microscope helps you get the fine details right - which is essential - but the telescope lets you stand back from your business, view it from afar, and see what needs fixing or can be done better.  Going to networking events, conferences - or if all else fails just taking a walk around the block - helps you look down the telescope.  Otherwise you can spend the whole time focusing on the urgent, rather than the important.

•  Enter awards.  It takes time and effort, but once you win something - or are short-listed - it's PR gold.