A small business needs a lot to grow – a strong financial plan, motivated employees and driven leadership, just to name a few. 

However, even with the proper groundwork in place, the company still might not be expanding as fast as one would like. There isn't one way to do things, and there are a number of different routes a person could take in order to achieve success.

Regardless of how a startup or small business came to be, owners should pay attention to several key financial tips in order to build their company up and grow into a leader within the respective industry.

The traits that make for good businesses
While each small business could take a different road to success, there are several specific traits that many entrepreneurs use to grow, according to Inc. magazine. These shared elements are good road maps for budding professionals looking to expand.

"I've seen a 25-year-old serial entrepreneur run great a company and I've seen a 45-year-old with no entrepreneurial experience also run a great company," Rory O'Driscoll, managing director with San Francisco-based Scale Venture Partners, told the news source. "But there are certainly commonalities between those whose companies are successful."

For example, entrepreneurs should be flexible, Inc. magazine explained. This can apply to business banking or it could impact goals, but either way, leaders should be able to adapt to unforeseen changes quickly, without reacting poorly. Not every idea will be successful right away, in fact, most will struggle. But that doesn't mean a person should give up. Instead, it might result in a few changes along the way, but the final product will be better for it. 

Adapting to problems will be easier with good employees, too. Therefore, Inc. magazine recommended hiring for work ethic, not just for intelligence. Small business owners should always look for people willing to work harder than themselves, and those types of personalities will often bring a needed passion and sense of dedication to the firm. While owners are usually the first to show up and the last to leave, colleagues who mimic that ethic will help a company succeed. 

Small businesses should stand out
A lot of people have great ideas, but few can turn that into a functional, growing firm. In order to become established in the industry, a business needs to stand out from the crowd, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. These organizations are uniquely suited to target specific customers, create quality products and be agile within the marketplace.

The first thing to start thinking is about the brand, the news source noted. These elements can make financial tips more effective, because it will represent the company and define the initial user experience. It is more than just a logo, advertising scheme or products. The brand incorporates all the visual, marketing and social media elements to build trust with customers. Therefore, it needs to be good.

In addition, a small business must put a face behind the products. This part is crucial, and these types of companies are in a perfect position to get personal with consumers. Face-to-face interactions will help develop brand loyalty, and it can set a company apart from its competitors. Even more, a financial plan could flourish if the owner is there to help motivate and inspire the employees. A hands-on entrepreneur can inject a lot of energy into the operation and keep everything on track.

Overall, a small business should be community-oriented, the SBA noted. Forming a respected and trusted brand can be done in ways other than direct marketing. For example, owners should participate in fundraisers, charities and local workshops to demonstrate an interest in the town.