business model

Row, Row, Row Your Boat! | Extraordinary Business

Extending innovation thinking in business design

row boatWhen I started my restaurant a number of years ago, I was committed to doing something that would be different – forward thinking and attractive for potential customers. My challenge was that I didn’t fully look at what my customer would want or how they would want it, but rather, how I wanted the business to look, act and function. All of the ideas and thinking for the business came from me. I was the man!

However, at some point, I got tired. The ideas stopped flowing. People came to me with suggestions that I often threw by the wayside. My pride became a consuming beast; the business because an 800 pound gorilla that I was anxious to shed, despite all of the inroads we had made.

Somehow, I think that I am not the only one who has ventured down this road, be it the development of a new product or service, introduction of a new store or eStore, a fund raising event or creation of a new course. In every case, making innovation come from a single source can and will absolutely limit its ability to become all of what it could potentially come…even if it is very good.

So how do you “think different?”

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Row, Row, Row Your Boat! | Extraordinary Business

Extending innovation thinking in business design

row boatWhen I started my restaurant a number of years ago, I was committed to doing something that would be different – forward thinking and attractive for potential customers. My challenge was that I didn’t fully look at what my customer would want or how they would want it, but rather, how I wanted the business to look, act and function. All of the ideas and thinking for the business came from me. I was the man!

However, at some point, I got tired. The ideas stopped flowing. People came to me with suggestions that I often threw by the wayside. My pride became a consuming beast; the business because an 800 pound gorilla that I was anxious to shed, despite all of the inroads we had made.

Somehow, I think that I am not the only one who has ventured down this road, be it the development of a new product or service, introduction of a new store or eStore, a fund raising event or creation of a new course. In every case, making innovation come from a single source can and will absolutely limit its ability to become all of what it could potentially come…even if it is very good.

So how do you “think different?”

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Surviving a Recession

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?! clip_image002

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:

  1. What are the basic things your business needs to survive every day? 
  2. What are the things that will allow the business to continue operating from day to day?
  3. 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?
  4. 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?
  5. 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].


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The Successful Salesperson

Think about this: what would happen to your business if you shamelessly passed along information that you think would be of value to others as part of your business model?  How do you think you would be seen in the community as you passed more and more info along?  Do you think it would be a positive experience for others?  Do you think that “servant leadership” in the comclip_image002munity can make the whole community thrive?  We’ll have to talk more about that, later, but for your consideration, “None of us is as Strong as All of Us!” ~Kenneth Blanchard.

Inspiration Agents

I had an opportunity, last week, to plug into this great sales program that I must past along.  It was put on by my friends at Inspiration Agents. As you can see below, I enjoyed this so much that I promised I would post a link to an audio version on my website!

Now, if you are sick an tired of missing out on sales opportunities, wasting your time and energies on long sales processes, or are just plane unsure how to get more dollars in the door for your company, this is the seminar to be at.

“I hooked in last evening just as you started to speak so did not announce my name. I wanted to let you know that I did enjoy it and learned and/or re-learned some good stuff!”  – Neil Scott-Barbour, Proteus on Demand Facilities

The Successful Salesperson
We had two great calls on Thursday
CLICK HERE and listen to the recordings. (FREE)
The calls were jam-packed with ideas, systems, and techniques you can use right away to super-charge your sales results!
LISTEN

“Hope you are doing VERY WELL!  That was an EXCELLENT talk you guys gave, yesterday!  Thank you for including me in the invitation.  I hope you are doing a CD or MP3 download of the series; I’d be happy to offer them through my website.” – Rick Meekins, Aepiphanni Business Solutions

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Who Are We and What Should We Do Next? SWOT Your Business!!

“Know thyself,” says Socrates. “To thine own self be true,” quotes the Bible. Do you know yourself? Do you know your business?

Where your business fits into the marketplace is one of the most overwhelming yet most important evaluations you can make in your business. Are you a market leader? Are you slowly (or quickly!) losing market share? What new policies could result in costs being cut? What are some economic indicators that could wipe your business out while you’re not looking?

While you may be aware of some or all of these, what methods do you have as part of your business model to evaluate them on an ongoing basis? How do you know when things change? How are you leveraging what you do well?

A simple tool that many businesses and consultants use is called a SWOT analysis.

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Develop Strategic Partnerships

Develop Strategic Partnerships

 

“None of us is as smart as all of us” is a comment quipped by Collin Powell, referring to the fact that if we all put our heads together and offer what we do best, we can get a lot further than we could ever do individually. Aepiphanni Business Solutions believes and supports this fact in our own business model and can help you incorporate it into yours. This will, no doubt, save you time, money, resources and strengthen your community. However, finding a partner that is appropriate for your company is no easy task. At Aepiphanni Business Solutions, we believe that matching a business partner is no less detailed and important than choosing a mate. There is no one company that can fulfill all of your needs, no one company that can fit the needs of every company.

 

Rick Meekins is the Managing Consultant at Aepiphanni, the trusted advisor for business leaders who are seeking forward-thinking solutions to help them plan for and navigate through the challenges of business growth. Our entrepreneurial multidisciplinary team works with clients to develop differentiating solutions and provide direction focused on lasting, strategic results.  We exist to help our clients CREATE | DESIGN | BUILD extraordinary businesses.

 

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below. If you are seeking advice on how to grow your business, streamline systems and processes, implement software or overcoming challenges to growth, please contact us, directly or submit a request for a complimentary Coffee & a Consult to learn how we can help you CREATE | DESIGN | BUILD an extraordinary company..

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