Every small-business owner will tell you that managing to get the business off the ground was no easy feat, and many struggle to even move past this stage. Hustling to take your business to the next level is a skill in itself that needs to be learnt over time, because sometimes throwing in the towel and giving up can look appealing when you’re not sure where to start.
Enter Jono Castano, founder of Sydney premium gym, ACERO, and H&R Block SMB ambassador. Jono took up personal training when he first moved to Sydney, and years later ACERO is now one of Sydney’s most cult-loved gyms, with their own apparel line and expansion to the US on the horizon.
Jono shares his top 5 tips for business owners on how to hustle, and what worked for him when taking ACERO international.
Set clear goals
The first and most important tip for any business is to map out clear goals for where you want to see it going, and make an effort to move towards it! It might sound straightforward, but knowing where you want to be is a crucial step in getting there. Define your business objectives and create specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely goals. This will give you a clear direction and help you stay focused.
Then take action on your goals; don’t just wait for things to happen. Actively seek opportunities, make decisions, and take calculated risks. Hustlers are proactive and always on the lookout for ways to move forward. If I had spare time, I’d be reaching out to influencers/celebrities to get them in for a session rather than sitting around with free time.
Surround yourself with passionate people
One of the best things you can do for yourself as a business owner is build a strong team. You may initially want to handle many aspects of your business solo. However, as your business grows, assembling a passionate team is crucial, surround yourself with talented individuals who share your vision and watch as your business grows.
Having the right support network, specifically for your finances, is key. This can be the last thing you want to think about when starting a business. That's where H&R Block's tax experts come in - they essentially act as an extension of your business. With their guidance, you can rest easy knowing that your finances are being managed correctly - leaving you with the headspace to manage the multiple other elements of the business.
Remember to always continue to network outside of your business! Building strong contacts who can support and collaborate with you will take your business further and wider than you could imagine. Start by attending industry events or joining professional organisations to meet new people.
Adaptability is key
Building a business requires constant flexibility and the ability to adapt to changing circumstances. It will test your resilience like never before, with unexpected challenges, market shifts, or technological advancements that will require you to adjust. Being open to change is crucial to ensure you’re never left behind.
Make sure to learn continuously and stay up-to-date with the latest trends, technologies, and best practices in your industry. Invest in your personal and professional development through courses, workshops, books, and podcasts and even learning from others in your industry. The more knowledge and skills you acquire, the better equipped you'll be to tackle challenges.
Adaptability ultimately enables you to stay relevant and seize emerging opportunities. During covid with the lockdowns, we pivoted our business to virtual personal training which reached a further reach than just Sydney. To this day, virtual training is a huge part of our business and even has clients internationally.
Prioritise time management
Time is a valuable resource, so be sure to manage it effectively. Identify your most important tasks and focus on them first. Eliminate distractions, delegate when possible, and create a schedule that allows you to maximise productivity. Personally I realised early on, that as a trainer, I have a specific training style, so I reached out to others with different training styles that do it well to be able to give my clients the best not only through myself but also through my staff. This way, not only am I saving time, I’m creating the ultimate experience for clients, it’s just about thinking in this perspective.
Maintain a strong work ethic
Hustling requires hard work, dedication, and discipline. Be willing to put in the effort, go the extra mile, and consistently deliver quality results. A strong work ethic demonstrates your commitment to success. Even though some days you might be convinced you want to give up, continue to show up for yourself and your team and the business will reward you.
Focus on delivering exceptional value to your clients. Understand their needs, solve their problems, and exceed their expectations. By providing outstanding products or services, you'll build a loyal customer base and gain a competitive edge.
ABOUT JONO CASTANO: Jono Castano, Celebrity Trainer, Founder of ACERO and H&R Block SMB ambassador
Jono Castano is a leading force in the Australian health and fitness industry. His positivity, drive and enthusiasm are contagious and he loves nothing more than helping people succeed in whatever they choose! Colombian-born Jono began his career in professional football. His sport may have brought him to Sydney but it was his drive and motivation that led him to the world of elite personal training. Years later, his Acero brand is thriving with a premium Sydney gym, an app and an apparel line while personally, Jono is an in-demand television and media contributor. His six key pillars to great health (exercise, nutrition, sleep, self-care, mental fitness and connection) deliver time and time again. Something he continues to share as a speaker, on social media and while training the next generation of fitness professionals. On Instagram, Jono has a following of well over 800k followers. His weekly blogs, honest motivating content paired with real life advice maintains an engaged audience. Recent brand partners include Google, Hermes, Coles, Hennessey and so many more. Now at the forefront of the Australian fitness industry, he has a long list of celebrity clients from Michael Clarke, Rita Ora and Dustin Martin, to Rebel Wilson and Sir Richard Branson. With so much going on for Jono and you're sure to see his evidence-based advice motivating people to overhaul their lives.
ABOUT H&R BLOCK:
Established in 1971, H&R Block Australia is the leading tax preparation firm in Australia, handling over 700,000 returns annually. Headquartered in Sydney, the company serves the taxpaying public in more than 450 offices. Our tax consultants use the latest in computerised processing and up-to-date electronic filing technology to prepare all types of returns, including personal, investment, small business and corporate returns. As Australia’s number one preparer of personal income tax returns, H&R Block also offers a range of services to small business clients, including bookkeeping and accounting services.