A business is like a wheelbarrow, it stands still until you simply push it.
Keep your business simple so you others will simply understand.
Manage well and build a better business by overcoming your problems and frustrations by not complicating your management and your business.
I have seen it and often read about, how successful people and companies have suddenly failed. When conditions change, it is often the most successful people and organisations who are the slowest to adapt to the changes and challenges around them.
The fresh thinking, creativity and leadership that led to their initial success are often replaced by a rigid devotion to the status quo; they refuse to change things that have worked well for them in the past. They become ill-equipped to handle situations beyond their knowledge and control.
If the reason you are in business or starting your own business is to make a lot of money, spend more time with your family, or not having to answer to anyone else, then think again. These might be great aspirations, but they will not necessarily make your dreams come true.
You never do anything worthwhile by accident or luck, including starting and building a business, there will always be problems and frustrations to overcome. They will require commitment, passion, planning and hard work. You eventually reach a point when you need to succeed becomes greater than the fear of failure.
There are many things that can cause a business to have problems and even fail, by ignoring them, they won’t go away. With each growth phase of a business comes a different set of problems and frustrations requiring a different set of skills, nothing stays the same.
“It’s too hard doing it by yourself”. One of the biggest challenges for business owners and managers is being able to delegate or outsource. They often believe that they are the only ones who can do it. If you don’t concentrate on the important issues facing the business, who else will and this is where you need to put your time and energy?
“It doesn’t matter how fast you travel unless you are on the right track you will never get where you want to go”. Peter Sergeant
You will have even problems and frustrations if you are reluctant to seek help and support, particularly during the early stages of development. It is the same as when we feel unwell and have a fear of finding out what is really wrong. Most times there is an answer and a simple cure readily available.
It is far better to ‘nip problems in the bud’, while they are small as they are easier to fix. How often do we hear the expression “I am sorry, but I am afraid that you have left it too late” or, “I wish you had come to me sooner”?
Success in business requires more than the desire to be successful, it also requires you to have practical business skills including the ability to implement and make things happen. Unfortunately, many owners and managers seem to discount the value of business knowledge and/or experience.
Without prior experience, training or education, you will normally be ill-equipped to manage the business. Educating yourself costs money when you can least afford it, but then so does ignorance.
Important, in fact, critical to business success, is the development of management expertise and commitment to good planning practices. Unsuccessful businesses lack written goals and clearly defined policies and objectives, whereas successful businesses have such direction and supplement their lack of skills and knowledge with that of advisors.
One of the most common problems with failed businesses is not having sufficient operating funds or working capital. Many business owners tend, as I did, to underestimate how much money is needed and they have an unrealistic expectation of incoming revenues from sales.
It is important to have a basic understanding of the fundamentals of financial management and know the key numbers. Look at advisors as an investment in your future success, not as a cost.
Excessive growth can transform a successful business into an unsuccessful business. By not having properly considered and simply planned for expansion, a business is unprepared, often leaving the business with critically tight working capital.
It is critical for a business to prepare and stick to a comprehensive business plan. A plan that deals with its future direction, management, marketing, relationships, operations and financial components. In other words, you need to manage each component simply and well if you want to build a better business.
“Because its purpose is to create a customer, the business has two – and only two – functions: Marketing and Innovation. Marketing and Innovation produce results. All the rest are costs”. Peter Drucker
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It is one thing to start a business, but quite another to be sure that you have chosen a business that is profitable and has the potential to meet and exceed your dreams.
Just because you are extremely busy does not mean that the necessary profit will materialise to sustain the business and profit is the ‘life blood’ of any organisation.
My first business was very successful for many years until the biggest drought in living memory hit our region and I have to close it down. It was only then that I really learned that the business was too complicated with too many problems and frustrations to be able to overcome the harsh conditions that we were experiencing.
Keep things simple and you will have more control and a better lifestyle.