Friday, December 28, 2012

Ways to Run a Business

Running a business can be rewarding and frustrating. The degree to which your business runs smoothly, and the amount of enjoyment you get from owning it, relates directly to the ways you choose to run your business. Every small business owner should follow a few rules that can help to make running a business a more rewarding experience.

Listen to Advice

Although it is your business and you know what results you are looking for, there are plenty of experienced small business owners you could get good advice from, according to the article titled "Ten Rules for Running Your Own Business" found on the Entrepreneur Support website. Listen to advice from those that have experience in running their own business, and see if you can find ways to incorporate that advice into the way you run your business.

Be Dedicated

Sam Walton started Wal-Mart, and his article "10 Rules for Building a Successful Business" published on the Power Home Biz website, Walton reminds small business owners to stay dedicated to making their business a success. Whatever shortcomings a business owner may have can be overcome by determination and the ability to recognize the need to rely on people with more knowledge in certain areas than the business owner does.

Be the Boss

One of the things that helps a business run smoothly is to establish the proper relationships immediately, according to the article titled "How to Run a Family Business" published in "Inc." magazine. Whether you are hiring friends, family members or total strangers, you need to take command of the business and let everyone know that you are in charge. Without establishing yourself as the leader, you will not be able to build your business the way you want to.

5 ways to keep employees excited

1. Give them a voice

Joie de Vivre Hotels was on the verge of failing when founder Chip Conley held a series of retreats to ask employees, from managers to bellhops, how they would turn things around for the California chain. Feeling more invested afterward, workers went into overdrive to attract business. "The more you give people a voice, the more they step up," he says. The company survived -- and Conley grew it to $250 million in sales.

2. Clear the roadblocks

As Jim Collins has pointed out, if you're asking, "How do I motivate employees?" you're going down the wrong path. The right question to ask is, "How do I stop demotivating them?" Ask staffers today what stupid processes and obstacles are slowing their work -- whether it's long meetings, endless paperwork, or incompetent colleagues -- and then free them from those hassles. My prediction: Their productivity will double.

3. Grow better bosses

People don't quit companies; they escape lousy managers. One recent survey showed that 65% of workers would prefer a new boss over a raise. If your team is underperforming, take a close look at how your lieutenants manage their direct reports. Do they know how to coach your employees so that they can excel -- or make the people around them feel alienated and stupid? If it's the latter, get them into management training ASAP.

4. Take a break from austerity

5 Easy Ways To Improve Your Small Business Cash Flow Now

Whether the economy stinks or not, there will always be small businesses that are struggling along chasing the ever elusive cash flow. It’s a universal problem that gets aggravated with the cycles of the economy. Some small businesses can survive a downturn in cash flow, but many will wither and die because they wait too long to take action. It’s time to take charge of your cash flow and make it work for your business. Here are five easy ways to do just that.

1. Stop Being a Bank For Your Customers – If you get paid as soon as you sell something, this tip won’t help you much. But for the thousands of you who sell on credit (yes, credit) by performing a service, invoicing and then getting paid after the work is complete, this tip will help you a bunch.  Most small business owners set due dates as “Net 30.” Who invented that rule? I’m here to tell you that you can make your invoice due date anything you want. And for the health of your business, make it short! How does “Due on Receipt” or “Net 5” sound to you? Change your due date now.

2. Get Those Bills Out The Door Pronto – Have you ever heard of a customer paying a bill they didn't get? Me neither. Way too often I hear small business owners (and many solopreneurs) say, “Oops, I forgot to get my invoices out this month.” That is not a quick road to healthy cash flow. Get that invoice out the door as soon as the work is completed. You don’t have to wait until the first of the month or a set amount of days to bill. This is under your control. Do it the day the work is completed and you’ll have your payment in hand sooner.

3. Set Up A Chunky Payment System – You run a big risk if you do work and then wait to get paid for it. A better way is to set up your client agreement using milestones and then get paid on an incremental basis. There are no rules that say you must do the work and then get paid. Remember, you are not a bank (see Tip #1). When you negotiate your next contract, set it up so you receive a portion of the payment when you begin, another portion when you are half done and the rest when the project is complete. Split your project up into logical delivery points and bill at each one of those points.

4. Package Your Cash In Bundles 

Save a Struggling Business

Starting a company from scratch has its appeal, but fixing a broken company can be more profitable... and satisfying.

Nearly every aspiring entrepreneur dreams about starting a company from scratch. Few dream of turning around a struggling business.

Like a friend of mine. He's wanted to own a business for years. I don't blame him. He's a brilliant operations guy. But there's a problem. "I don't know what kind of business to start," he invariably says.

That's why he's decided to buy a once thriving, now struggling business. Compared to a start-up the advantages are obvious: An established infrastructure, a certain level of market awareness, and at least some cash flow.

Plus the one thing every start-up envies: Existing customers.

Still, turning around a struggling business is far from easy. I asked Niels Juul, a partner at the brand recovery firm Nofatego, how he typically approaches a turnaround.

Juul and his firm just finished a three-year turnaround and restructuring of Cecchi Gori Pictures, the film production company behind Oscar-winning movies like Life is Beautiful and Il Postino. (Named as temporary CEO, Juul was brought in to recover lost assets and restructure operations after years of mismanagement and fraud.)

Here's what Juul says about how to turn around a struggling business:

Think like a firefighter.

We feel often like firefighters; when we kick in the door we don't know what's going on inside.

Usually the flames are bigger than we were told, and we walk in and don't know if the house will collapse before we put out the fire. That's because we're often called when it's almost too late.

You may get the opportunity to buy a struggling company when it's almost too late, too.

Why? Raising the white flag is tough. Most people don't want to admit they need help—much less that they're failing.

Everyone holds out hope, even to the end, so always assume the business is in worse shape than you were led to believe.

Ignore the business plan.

A Happy Staff is a Productive Staff

A company's employees are one of its most valuable assets, and managing them can be one of the most important—yet challenging—tasks required of a small business owner.

Even businesses that have very few people listed in their employee payroll software still need to be attentive to how motivated, productive, and satisfied their employees are, because all of these things can impact the company's bottom line.

However, theories abound for how to increase staff productivity and job satisfaction, and some small business owners may be discouraged by thinking that they do not have enough money or resources to adequately meet the needs of their employees.

On the contrary, many employee motivation and recognition strategies require little to no financial investment, and may be simply a matter of adjusting management practices. Others require some investment, but that is often returned by boosting the company's productivity and, consequently, bottom line.

Invest in compensation packages

One of the most traditional and commonly used tactics for increasing employee satisfaction and retention is ramping up compensation packages. 

This can involve raises, bonuses, or enhanced benefits such as matching 401(k) contributions, transportation reimbursement, health insurance, and vacation days. 

However, not every business can afford to take measures like these, especially in the wake of the economic downturn. Businesses are encouraged to use their employee payroll software to see if the company can afford enhancing compensation packages.

The win-win incentive strategy

Benefits do not always have to be expensive—in fact, some may actually help a business increase its profit margins. 

For example, incentives such as flexible work schedules and telecommuting can improve worker satisfaction by improving an employee's work-life balance, making employees feel happier and more productive. This is an especially attractive setup for workers that have small children at home.

At the same time as making employees happier, telecommuting and flexible work schedules can reduce overhead costs by limiting the amount of energy, supplies and office space needed. If a company offers transportation reimbursements, this can also eliminate some costs.

All work and no play…

Another way to increase employee motivation and job satisfaction is to make investments in corporate culture. 

This can be as simple as recognizing employees on their birthday or instituting monthly cocktail hours, or can be as involved as creating a company softball team or putting an entertainment-filled break room in the office. 

Whichever level of involvement is chosen, employees will likely appreciate the attention being paid to their job satisfaction, a factor which will often be seen in their productivity and performance.

5 ways to find extraordinary employees

Having a hard time getting top talent? Become a good spy and send mash notes to your rivals' top employees.

1. Build your bench

View scouting for talent the same way you do customer acquisition so you always have top people in the pipeline. Keep an ongoing list of potential hires and stay in touch regularly by, for instance, e-mailing articles that will educate them about your company. That's the advice of Brad Smart, author of Topgrading and president of the consultancy Smart & Associates. Also: Ask your key executives to suggest candidates every month.

2. Play in the right sandboxes

"Hang out where the people you're looking for hang out," says Mark Lancaster, CEO of recruiter EmploymentGroup in Battle Creek, Mich. For instance, to find an executive who can handle a merger, attend meetings of the Association for Corporate Growth. Or advertise in publications your targets like to read. One CEO friend hired a great CFO for his organic market after attracting 40 great applicants in one week through an ad on

3. Try guerilla tactics

Of course, the best talent is working for someone else. Steve Hall, founder of online auto marketplace Driversselect in Dallas, finds out who's winning industry awards by reading trade publications -- then phones the winners to ask for their professional advice. That's how he found a great services manager. For entry-level gigs, he leaves notes on cars parked in restaurants' employee-of-the-month spots suggesting that the workers contact him about a new opportunity.

4. Tweak the job description

Struggling to find the right systems engineer, Jennifer Walzer, CEO of tech firm BUMI, rewrote the job description she was circulating to draw those with the right cultural fit for her New York City tech firm. She added "highly developed sense of irony and a touch of snark," and got 125 applications with five great candidates, one of whom she hired. That's up from the 120 applications -- with zero strong candidates -- she received with a standard, HR-style job summary.

5 Ways to Grow Your Market

The world's top marketing guru explains how to innovate your sales and marketing.

A few years ago, I heard marketing uber-guru Seth Godin speak about business growth through innovation at a conference hosted by my friend and mentor Gerhard Gschwandtner, CEO of

I ran across my session notes from that conference recently and decided that Seth's ideas were definitely worth sharing:

1. Invent a New Market Segment

Position your product or service at the "logical extreme" of some aspect of your product category. For example, if the typical product in your market is expensive but comes with free service, make your product free and charge a subscription fee for the service. If you're making a commodity product, go for something either huge or tiny. Seth used the example of Hummers and Mini Coopers, but I think a better example is the PC market, where most of the growth in the past five years has been in high-end game machines and tiny netbooks.

2. Exchange Your Sales Funnel for a Sales Network

Traditionally, sales is envisioned as a funnel, with prospects shoveled into the big end and customers trickling out the bottom. Today, however, there is now so much market clutter that it's increasingly expensive to locate new prospects. So rather than concentrating on lead generation, create products and services that are so remarkable that existing customers can't wait to tell their friends and colleagues about them. Find ways, like contests and special offers, to help your happy customers get the message out.

3. Market to the Trailing or the Leading Edge

With the Internet, informed customers can always find whatever they want for the lowest possible price. Growing your business therefore means finding either two types of customer: clueless or brilliant. Clueless customers don't know what they want and thus can be persuaded to want whatever you're selling. Brilliant customers are so knowledgeable that they can to be persuaded that what you have is special and therefore worth seeking out. It's only on the fringes of your market where there's either sufficient ignorance or sufficient knowledge for your offering to command a premium price.

4. Create a Story That Shows How You're Different

5 Ways to Send Productivity Through the Roof

Here's how to motivate employees to get more done--no extra money or real effort required.

Want to dramatically improve your employees' performance without spending any money?

Want to dramatically improve your own performance without taking classes, attending seminars, or buying cool new gadgets that promise lots but deliver little?

It's easier than you think.

Here's how:

Create self-esteem incentives.

We all work harder when we feel respected and appreciated. (Obvious, but really easy to forget.)

Every employee is different, so think about the type of praise and recognition that has meaning to each person who works for you. For example, some people like to be praised publicly; others prefer a quiet private word.

Then build incentives based on what makes the most impact. Have an employee lead a presentation to upper management. Place an employee in charge of an important project. Give an employee the opportunity to train in another department.

Employees work hard because it's their job, but employees work even harder when they feel good about themselves.

Every job has some latitude--make sure you fully exploit that latitude so your employees can feel better about themselves, both as an employee and as a person.

They'll naturally be more productive--and happier. The two always go hand in hand.

Eliminate stupid stuff.

Every company and every job has a number of once meaningful but now worthless tasks.

Think about all the "that's how we've always done things" stuff. If a task doesn't directly impact sales, quality, productivity, or safety, get rid of it and free up that time.

I once started a new job and had to spend two hours a day creating reports. After a week, I did a little networking and asked the recipients what I could do to improve the reports. Each person answered with some version of "Don't worry about it... I don't even look at them." I stopped creating the reports, no one cared, and I looked like a superstar simply because I had more time to focus on other tasks.

Get rid of the stupid stuff and every employee gets more time to be a superstar.

Ask for one simple thing you could do to make someone's job easier.

5 Ways to Push Your Company Past the Startup Phase

Any entrepreneur who has launched a company will tell you that running a startup is stressful, time-consuming and full of high risk. But before a company is truly able to transition into the growth stage of is business, it must pass through many ups and downs. But while roughly 80% of startups fail in the first five years, there are a number of things that entrepreneurs can do internally to help push their company past startup and into phase two. Below, you'll find the most important things to keep in mind.

1. Start With a Great Idea

It might seem simple, but having a great idea -- either a groundbreaking new product or an innovative service -- is half the battle. If you have a great idea and are able to identify the appropriate market to sell to, then the company will grow organically and investors will line up to obtain a piece of the business. But if you find that you’re having trouble securing interest from investors, then something is simply not clicking. Either your idea isn’t as great as you thought it was, or there isn’t enough market potential for it. If this happens, it’s time for the now infamous “pivot” -- where you take your idea in a slightly different direction. You’ll have to keep doing this until you hit something that works, or you run out of money.

2. Find the Best People

The team behind the idea is essential to making the business stick. During your company’s time as a startup, the first 10 employees are often people who are specially fit for this phase: they’re well-rounded, flexible and extremely innovative. During the startup phase, you want a team of aggressive generalists who are able to pitch in and do anything necessary at the drop of a hat.

But as the company develops and expands over time, you’ll need fewer generalists and more specialists. You’ll need people who create the technology behind your product, a separate sales force, an operations department and a management team. And all of these people must be excellent within their given area because there’s no room for error.

If a startup idea isn’t compelling enough to secure funding but the team behind the idea is solid, your chance for investment increases. But keep in mind that the first employees who you hire very likely will not be the same ones that you’ll end up with 10 years later.

3. An MBA Education Is Not Necessary

The right way to restructure

Change is a part of life, and for a business’ life it’s no different. As the economy shrinks, markets open or practice differs, companies sometimes have to restructure to remain viable and prosperous.

But with restructuring comes a raft of problems, especially for the staff. As soon as they’re told there will be a restructure, the first thought is ‘Will I keep my job?’ followed by ‘If I do, will I lose the manager I like, my friendly colleagues, my most enjoyable tasks?’

Competition sets in as people vie for their jobs, or stop trying because they think they’ll be fired soon anyway.

Bronwyn Anderson, registered psychologist and managing director of Change Dynamics, which specialises in proving support for businesses going through a change process, has seen the good, the bad and the ugly of re-structures. She shared some words of wisdom with us.

Do your research

It sounds obvious, but restructures cannot be done on a whim. Since it can be a difficult process, make sure it’s worth it and is going to work. Anderson recommends finding examples to study. She also says that once a re-structure has been drafted, to take it to the staff.

At a recent DHB restructure she was involved in, management consulted employees beforehand and modified the restructure slightly before implementing it because of the extra information and feedback they received. 

Sell the change

It is absolutely crucial that everyone understands why the business is restructuring and is on-board with the changes. “If people aren’t involved, or don’t feel heard, they don’t accept the outcome and can create continual resistance. Even when it’s all over, if people afterwards are not understanding why it happened, they don’t engage with the new direction,” Anderson says. 

She stresses that middle management must be sold on the change as much as other staff are. After all, if they don’t lead it enthusiastically, then they won’t win over their teams. 

Be honest

Burn Your Business Plan – Before It Burns You

Entrepreneurs around the globe are already practicing this method mix with great success from Silicon Valley to Switzerland, Colombia to Kenya, Singapore to Shanghai. These entrepreneurs avoid three common pitfalls:

1 – Falling in love with your first idea, without exploring alternatives

The same products, services or technologies can fail or succeed depending on the business model you choose. Exploring the possibilities is critical to finding a successful business model. Settling on first ideas risks the possibility of missing potential that can only be discovered by prototyping and testing different alternatives.

When Nespresso, a corporate start-up by food giant Nestlé, launched their revolutionary single portioned espresso machines they almost went bankrupt. Only after the introduction of a new business model did they grow to a 3 billion USD business.

When Xerox launched the first photocopier they couldn’t sell their technology until they found a business model that spread the machine through leasing and earned profits from small amounts of a large amount of photocopies. Entrepreneurs who understand business model design explore extremely different alternatives, rather than falling in love with their first idea.

2 – Not listening to customers hard enough

Constantly talking to real potential customers from the very inception of your ideas all the way to their execution is a prerequisite for any serious founder. Great entrepreneurs are often great listeners and they can spot patterns and pick up on small details in customer stories.

For example, good listeners try to get beyond what customers ”want”, towards understanding the jobs customers are trying to get done and the pains and gains they encounter related to them. Clayton Christensen, one of my favorite academics, often quotes legendary Harvard professor Theodore Levitt to illustrate this: ”People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole!” As an entrepreneur you want to figure out what the pains and gains related to getting that quarter inch hole are. That’s where you will create value for customers.

3 - Not testing hard enough

Thursday, December 6, 2012

How to Recognize Which Customers Are Bad for Business

How can I identify the customers I should shed--the ones who suck up my time and energy in exchange for meager returns?

Most business owners know in their guts that a good chunk of customers are not profitable. But in a universe in which it's drummed into us that the customer is always right, it amounts to heresy to admit that a customer may, in fact, be wrong and should go. It's difficult to send any potential revenue packing, but culling the client list is worth it--it frees up resources to take better care of your best customers.

The Pareto principle, more commonly known as "the 80-20 rule," can be applied to customer profitability. In short, it means that 20 percent of your customers likely provide 80 percent of your profits. Inversely, it says that 20 percent of your customers may be sucking up an astounding 80 percent of your direct customer costs.

The problem is that many small-business owners don't have the tools they need to determine if one unprofitable client is worth nurturing for a big payday down the road, or if they should say, "Sorry, I can no longer work with you," and move on. That's why I'm here to help.

Analyze Profit By Customer

Profit equals revenue minus costs. Simple, right? To analyze customer profitability, we must assign revenue and costs to each customer. For those of you with thousands of customers, you'll want to put them into groups. For example, a restaurant could divvy up its patrons among the breakfast, lunch and dinner crowds; a building-supply house could group retail and wholesale customers separately.

Revenue is usually pretty easy to pull, since accounting systems can match each sale or invoice to a specific customer. Costs, however, are trickier to determine. Without burying you in the arcane world of cost accounting,

Identify the key moment when an idea turns into a business

How often do you see a thriving new business or company, and slap yourself for not thinking of the idea first? Or, even worse, slap yourself because you did think of it, but didn't do anything about it?

Many of us have great ideas, cumulatively millions of them every day, but the difference between having an idea and commercialising it into a marketable product is significant. It's the difference between something happening and not.

One of the greatest entrepreneurs of all time, Michael Dell, started his computer company with a few dollars in his University of Texas dorm room, and it has grown into the massive company that it is today. He had the idea and he made it happen, that's the important bit.

This week is Microelectronics Week and MIDAS Ireland, the representative body for the microelectronic sector, is forecasting that one third of the new jobs in the semiconductor sector are expected to come from indigenous companies -- this is a minimum of 650 R&D jobs over the next five years with further positions created indirectly.

The sector is thriving and it's important that we nurture our graduates and entrepreneurs so that the hub of activity in the start-up community can continue to grow in this country.

When I started RedMere I was joining a growing list of Irish technology and semiconductor companies that produce world-beating technology for global markets in everything from networking equipment to high definition TVs, tablets and smartphones.

RedMere pioneered a new technology called Active Cables (video cables with embedded devices to improve their performance) and is now the leader in the field. So how do you go from an idea to a business?

15 Reasons You Need a Business Plan

Whether you're just starting out, growing your business or seeking outside help, a well-thought-out business plan is the vehicle you need to get you there. 

Why do you want a business plan? You already know the obvious reasons, but there are so many other good reasons to create a business plan that many business owners don't know about. So, just for a change, let's take a look at the less obvious reasons first and finish with the ones you probably already know about. Think of this as a late-show top 10, with us building up to the most important reasons you need a business plan.

15. Set specific objectives for managers. Good management requires setting specific objectives and then tracking and following up. I'm surprised how many existing businesses manage without a plan. How do they establish what's supposed to happen? In truth, you're really just taking a short cut and planning in your head--and good for you if you can do it--but as your business grows you want to organize and plan better, and communicate the priorities better. Be strategic. Develop a plan; don't just wing it.

14. Share your strategy, priorities and specific action points with your spouse, partner or significant other.
Your business life goes by so quickly: a rush of answering phone calls, putting out fires, etc. Don't the other people in your business life need to know what's supposed to be happening? Don't you want them to know?

13. Deal with displacement. Displacement is probably by far the most important practical business concept you've never heard of. It goes like this: "Whatever you do is something else you don't do." Displacement lives at the heart of all small-business strategy. At least most people have never heard of it.

12. Decide whether or not to rent new space. Rent is a new obligation, usually a fixed cost. Do your growth prospects and plans justify taking on this increased fixed cost? Shouldn't that be in your business plan?

11. Hire new people. This is another new obligation (a fixed cost) that increases your risk. How will new people help your business grow and prosper? What exactly are they supposed to be doing? The rationale for hiring should be in your business plan.

10. Decide whether you need new assets, how many, and whether to buy or lease them. Use your business plan to help decide what's going to happen in the long term, which should be an important input to the classic make vs. buy. How long will this important purchase last in your plan?

9. Share and explain business objectives with your management team, employees and new hires. Make selected portions of your business plan part of your new employee training.

8. Develop new business alliances.
Use your plan to set targets for new alliances, and selected portions of your plan to communicate with those alliances.

7. Deal with professionals. Share selected highlights or your plans with your attorneys and accountants, and, if this is relevant to you, consultants.

6. Sell your business. Usually the business plan is a very important part of selling the business. Help buyers understand what you have, what it's worth and why they want it.
5. Valuation of the business for formal transactions related to divorce, inheritance, estate planning and tax issues.

How to restructure your business

Simon Mair knows all too well how quickly things can change in business. After setting up a national equipment hire company, Australian Industrial Rental, in 2007, which grew 60 per cent a year for two years courtesy of the burgeoning mining sector, taking on $10 million in debt, things started to unravel. “For the first half of 2009, we were still growing at about 60 per cent,” AIR chief executive Mair says. “Then the claws of the financial crisis dug in and by the third quarter it was pretty obvious we were going backwards.” Eight months after AIR opened a branch in Mount Isa, Queensland, 23 mines closed. “Maintenance budgets were cut from $900 million to $100 million almost overnight,” Mair says. “Everyone clamped up and we just limped along.”

This pattern was replicated in every market and by the end of 2009, the company was behind revenue targets by 50 per cent and faced the possibility of not being able to pay debts or tax bills. “Monthly losses led us to the realisation that we needed help,” he says. “We could handle a few losses but once they became prolonged, it reached the point where we couldn’t make payments to the Australian Taxation Office or the banks.”

By January 2010, AIR was in debt to seven banks, six in arrears and its total gearing level was more than 1300 per cent. The principal bank was owed more than 40 per cent of the total debt and because of non-payment and breaches of its trading account, AIR was in the bank’s workout section and a week away from having administrators appointed. It marked the start of an very stressful 18 months for Mair.

“We were under considerable pressure from our financiers and it was frustrating because we didn’t have the capacity in-house to stem the losses and frankly we didn’t know what to do,” he says. “That’s when we got turnaround specialists Vantage Performance involved.”

Vantage director Steve Hogan and executive Harsh Shah spent the first week working 20-hour days with Mair and his senior management team, analyzing the business.

The process identified two key operational issues that needed to be addressed.

5 Common Pitfalls to Avoid to Grow a Business

You have all heard or seen entrepreneurs whose great idea has worked and the business has grown from leaps to bounds, the entrepreneur and the management team have worked very hard and opened 2 to 3 more branches, then suddenly the business stagnates or it starts declining. You then wonder, what went wrong.

The main problem is that in the beginning, most brand new businesses focus on sales and because they want growth, they put their energy and money in revenue producing areas   like new product, new plants, new markets and more branches. Little or no money is put on infrastructure  or organizational framework  hence there is no system to provide the management with  the information and data  it needs to run  the ongoing day to day operations of the company  and to make  decisions about current and future  strategies for the business.

This is natural because the entrepreneurs want the business idea to work.

How then does an entrepreneurial start up make the successful transition to a rapidly expanding medium size company.
To achieve this greatness, entrepreneurial company must address the following 5 problems that come from within, namely:

  •     The ineffective deployment of human resources. In the early days of a start up, it is not essential to define job requirements or set up performance evaluations. You then find, that as the company grows the entrepreneur naturally starts giving the employees who have been with him from the beginning more responsibilities far beyond their level of experience and sometimes beyond their level of ability. The danger with this is that without developing a well qualified management team, the company becomes unable to respond fast enough to new opportunities and misses warning signs of trouble. Secondly, without job descriptions worked out in advance and an adequate salary requirement, expanding companies can very easily hire wrong people. Another thing that happens with expanding companies is that they tend to stick with the management structure they know rather than making necessary changes and adjustments as the company grows. You as an entrepreneur thus have to take note of the above tendencies in your expanding business to avoid disaster.

Maintaining a small business

Small Business

Maintaining a small business is really a challenging task. Each and every step must be moved carefully without affecting the growth of business. Even a small mistake in the small business strategy will tend to cause a great back lack of economy in business. Hence more concern is needed while stepping every single step. Let’s have some crispy note on executing successful small business.


As soon as a business idea arise simultaneously the need for budget and finance raises. It is quite common that budget is the main source of investment in every business. Only a timely and perfect budget can assist the initial to the large stage of a business. It is better to plan your business according to the budget rather than changing your budget according to the plan. The loan and other aspects must be made ready before commencing a business. This is because timely investment is very highly required for small business strategy.


Today more people are engaged in small business strategy but as you all know only few of them were successful. The only reason behind this successful growth is their planning strategies. Nothing is possible in business without perfect planning.  It is quite easy that all can make plan which is easy to spell and imagine. The fact behind this planning is they must be real time. They must be easy to implement and execute.


Employee is one of the most needed sources for small business. It is not necessary that a business must consist of more number of employees. The effectual, employee with good educational standards can be hired. As the employee are considered to set the development of a business, never compromise in hiring the highly talented employee.


Today technology plays a great role even in small business. Hire the software packages which best suit your budget as well must be effective for your business. Installing good software will reduce the burden in business to a greater extent. Hire the networking service which can provide good technical support at any instant.
Database maintenance:

Most People Will Never Be Great At Growing A Business. Read Why!

What?  How could a leadership coach say something like that you say?  It’s easy.  Listen to small business owners complain about customers who barter them down to a price proposal that’s unprofitable.  Work with a small business owner who can’t tell you what their sales were for last year – but still want to make more this year and next.

Yes, it’s a challenge as a leadership coach to help small business owners get out of their own way.  It’s also a challenge providing leader as coach training in creating an environment where individual owners can develop the self-awareness and authenticity they need to become successful.

Yet, talk with those business owners who are successful in business growth and they will all tell you that there is hope.  Let’s review some of the critical steps to success and growth.

Step 1: Develop A Business Plan

Correct.  You heard it. Develop a business plan. Write it down!  Have a vision, a mission, specific objectives, implementation strategies, and action steps.  Make sure you address your strategies for marketing, sales, strategic alliances, and set milestones.  Look at your management structure, personnel plan, and identify management gaps.  Oh, and let’s not ignore your financial planning – what are your financial assumptions, do a break-even analysis, a budget, projected income statement, and balance sheet.

Related: What You Can Learn From Jay Niblick About Self-Awareness And Authenticity – Part I

Step 2: Plan For Value

Align your goals and objectives to a specific value set.  Establish your values and guiding principles such as: -

  •     Humility, Loyalty, Trust
  •     Respect for self, others, the competition
  •     Caring, Responsive, Adaptable
  •     Integrity, Credibility
  •     Industrious, Hardworking, Fulfills Obligations
  •     Socially Conscious, Legally compliant with laws.

It’s important that you are working on a business that aligns with who you are and reflects how you can impart those values into your plan, employee selection, as well as marketing and sales strategy.  Seek congruency throughout the business in these elements.

Step 3: Determine Your Growth Strategies

A Quick Guide to Naming Your Business

Naming a product or a company is a difficult decision. Unlike most challenges you'll face, this one is in a field in which virtually everyone claims expertise. The first thing to remember when naming something is not to rely too heavily on another's advice. Names created by committee are usually losers.

Don't forget about the law. Your name can cause a Jurassic Park-size problem if you don't first conduct a legal name search. The last thing you want is to hit it big, then be forced to change your name because a tiny company has the same name and wants $100 million from you for the rights to it.

Start by sitting down and making a list of what you want your name to stand for in the mind of the consumer. Your name should reflect your name and your positioning. Haagen-Dazs is supposed to make you think of cold fjords and rich, creamy milk. It doesn't matter that there's no such person as Haagen or no such place as Dazs--the name serves its purpose.

You must decide what you want your name to imply. It's usually the first thing your prospects learn about you. Here are some of the things your name can tell your prospects about you:

    The best
    Highest quality

Once you've got your list of attributes,