Business improvement takes a strategic change approach by its owner. And whilst the subject of many articles, discussions, forums and groups, ‘improvement’ is very much a relative term. To the small business owner who is facing the back door and simply cannot see a way out, any strategic change will probably represent an improvement. To an already profitable enterprise it may be changes in efficiencies or whatever takes the business to the next level that may represent ‘improvement’.
If a small business owner is making good profit (by their own standard) but they’re tied to the office feeling that they can’t get away from the business, then improvement might come in the form of some time off or freedom – whilst maintaining or increasing the profit? It’s relative.
And the term business improvement is also determinable by what benchmark you use to measure any improvement. A cheeseburger is a gourmet meal to someone who’s starving.
What strategies do YOU engage to improve your business and your life? Here are a few ideas to help improve your small business.
Staffing & outsourcing. Does your current staffing policy and delegation structure enable you to do what you need ON the business, while it still makes money and functions efficiently? If not, look at the structure of your staff. Make sure you have a mix of people and resources to do the jobs that will give you what you need. Utilise staff to make your life easier.
Money and profit. If you need more money there are a number of techniques to increase profit. Most people look straight to the top line in the accounts. The sales. But money is made ate every level of the business where an associated cost can be calculated. In your efficiency. And your efficiencies can be the downfall for retaining the income. What are your current (and desired) gross margins? Where is money leaking from your business?
Many business owners tell me that they thought the sales were OK…. but there’s no money in the bank. Guess what… you have a leak. Plug it.
Time and activity. If you need more time and feel that you’re stuck doing the mundane stuff, get a VA or an external resource to do the hack work for you. Look at what you do on a repetitive basis that could be outsourced to save you time. Because your time IS money. It can cost very little – but think of the opportunity cost of you doing the work rather than delegating it. Systemise your business.
A good coach will help you to identify these and more areas of your business where you can make subtle but meaningful improvement.