Many of my clients, these days, are looking to me to help them find new ways to do what they do and to reach out to their clients. They tell me that the sales process is getting longer, they need to make various cuts and that they cannot depend on their steady cash flow to bring in the clients they are used to serving.
Of course, in a recession, this is no surprise. The problem isn’t about recognizing the problem, it’s about working through the solution.
One of the biggest questions is around “where to begin.” That’s one of those questions that makes you kind of laugh and think to yourself…man…if it was that easy! The question is…do I market more…do I let people go…do I change my product offerings…do I…and how do I know what to do, and when?!
Well, the majority of the answer comes from knowing your business. While this exercise isn’t a “quick and dirty fix” that will turn things around for your organization, it is an exercise that all business owners need to incorporate into their business model. There are 3 internal considerations and 2 external. The exercise:
- What are the basic things your business needs to survive every day?
- What are the things that will allow the business to continue operating from day to day?
- What is your relationship with your stakeholders? Who are they? How are you serving them? How are they serving you? What is your messaging for each group?
- What do people think about your company – or you, if you are the company – when they think about it? How do they envision your company?
- Do you have a plan for growing the organization?
In order to navigate the tough seas of unstable economies, you need to be aware of your business – it’s capabilities and capacities. You need to know its strengths and weaknesses and what is going on in the environment. This is the valuable information you need in order to make good decisions about the direction for your business. Lastly, remember that the environment is continually change – it shifts like sand, nearly every day. While there will be some things that rarely change – your belief statements, for example, there are other items that may change, such as your vendors, economic conditions, etc. Ensure that you have a regular practice of bringing up this list of business needs and making adjustments as your business has need.
At Aepiphanni Business Solutions, we are a Small Business Consulting Firm dedicated to serving the needs of small business owners. We specialize in helping you develop strategies for your organization, and are committed to your success. If you have further questions about creating your strategy or developing your vision, please give me, Rick Meekins, a call at 678-265-3908, or email us at [email protected].