10 Traits That Will Help You Succeed in Small Business (And Maybe Life)

By Malachy Walsh

What does it take to succeed in business? Skill, sure. Some charisma, yes. Innovative ideas, without doubt. An MBA from Stanford? It can’t hurt.

But those are the easy answers — as we found out in September during Dreamforce — when we were lucky enough to sit down with leaders from small, but growing companies to ask this very question. Coming from all walks of life (one had been a pro-football player, another had been fighter jet pilot), they brought unique perspectives to the question that shared some come themes and that we think are worth sharing with you.

Over the next year, we will feature videos of these small business leaders discussing hot topics around success. But for now, here is quick summation of what these men and women are looking for, beyond the resume — and we think these insights can help you succeed in small business (and maybe even life).


Gigantic appetite for any work. And all work.


Team player

Execution-oriented with prejudice for excellence



Credit givers

Accountability and risk-taking


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