One of the most common things I hear from Small Business owners is the inspiration for the title of this piece… “My Business Is Not What I thought It Would Be.”
That requires some defining.
One of the biggest things I find among business owners is the issue of time. They thought by owning their own business they would be in better control of their time and therefore have more of it. Almost all are working 60 or more hours a week. Many are working 75 hours a week. Most are working 6-7 days a week….even those business owners who have successful businesses.
To be blunt…their business is owning them instead of them owning their business. Additionally, everything they dreamed of achieving by being a business owner might be happening except for one of the most important ones…the time they want to spend away from the business enjoying what they cherish most.
So what can they do about it? How about if I told you the solution, pure and simple, is to GROW THE BUSINESS?
Not grow the business in leaps and bounds like some business development, heavy sales or marketing coaches and consultants would have you do. Grow the business in a safe, holistic nonsensical way that not only improves performance and profitability but also reduces the time you the business owner are required to spend in your business. I can’t do much for those who want to voluntarily work 7 days a week while putting in over 100 hours of time other than to greatly increase their profits and business value. What can be done is to show you how to increase revenue, increase profit and increase the net value of your business while reducing significantly the amount of time you have to spend there.
The answer to what you should do is simple…. Increase revenue and widen the margin; contain costs and reduce costs. That is the answer; it is not the how. We all know the devil is in the details and this is no different. The steps are as follows:
- You must commit to wanting to grow your business
- You must commit to changing how you run your business
- You must commit the time to make the change
- You must commit to learning and doing.
Those 4 steps are the how. Step’s 3 and 4 are the ones with all of the specifics. Resources exist at different levels of value and results. It is in these steps that you will learn how to measure almost everything that happens in your company. You will learn how to balance time and money to maximize profitability. You will eliminate waste and error. You will only focus on 8 Key areas of your business, outsourcing everything else. You will create customers for life and your workforce will want to come to work and help you accomplish all of that.
This isn’t some pie in the sky process. It is a tried and true, proven process that is easily applied to any business that commits to the 4 steps above. Some of the early steps exist, free, in the many Blogs I have written on the topics. For over a year some of the detail on how to accomplish all of this, what you must learn has been outlined and shared in my blog. Free information, that can start you on the journey to Turning Your Business Into What You Want It To Be. Looking through the articles I have written you will find information on those 8 Key Areas. They are:
- Product Management – Design/Development, Project Costing / Supplier Management / Materials Management.
- Production – Total Quality / Error Free production/performance.
- Marketing – Research, Pricing, Lead Generation.
- Sales – Closing the sale, Contract Management.
- Customer Service – Order Management and Processing.
- Customer Retention – Retention/Recovery, Keeping Customers for Life.
- Waste Management (Velocity) – Waste Reduction, Productivity, Efficiency.
- Leadership – Employee Engagement, Performance.
Whether you are a 1 person or 30 person business you have each of these functions in your business. Further, each one of them can and should be measured. Without measuring you cannot manage. Without measuring you could easily be doing something you shouldn’t. I see business owners waste a lot of money on processes or “programs” that claim superior results. Most often the superior results achieved are by the one selling them the service, process or program. It doesn’t have to be that way.
The bottom line remains your bottom line. Managing your business in this manner takes a 4 step investment of time and money. Master the areas above through that investment and not only will your company be more successful; you will have more time for the other more important things in your life.