From managing to marketing and everything in between, the world of small business can be both exciting and overwhelming. When you first start up, you have dreams of making the big time. But as time goes on, you may discover that although you have the passion, the energy runs out quickly when each day provides the next challenge.
Don’t let these common mistakes keep you down. Avoid them, and get your business back on track.
Failing to plan – The saying is true: If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. This is a big problem for many small businesses. If you don’t have goals and specific plans on how to get the business where it needs to be, you will be distracted by every detour along the road and your business may end up nowhere near the ultimate destination. Spend a day at the beginning of each year setting out your goals and plans — it doesn’t have to be pages long. In fact, try to put your goals on one page and pin it above your desk so you can refer to it regularly.
Not understanding cash flow – Remember, cash is king. Every business fails when they run out of cash. Most business owners focus on sales and profits, but cash flow is critical to the success of your business. Many profitable business still struggle with cash flow. You need to understand the difference between profit and cash, and focus on ensuring you have adequate reserves to cover the unexpected.
Believing “build it and they will come” – Don’t listen to those who say, “build it and they will come.” Of course we believe in our product or service offer to customers. Just because we feel that we have the answer to the customers’ problems does not necessarily mean they are aware of their problem — or know you have the solution. It takes more than simply opening a business to guarantee sales will happen. You need to stay on your marketing toes at all times to keep a steady stream of customers visiting your business.
Putting garbage in — and expecting to understand it later – If you put garbage in, you will get garbage out. Many small businesses use spreadsheets to keep their financial, customer and key business records. Although this might suffice at the beginning, once the business is up and running, you need specialist software that will ensure all the information you record is correct and accurate. Spreadsheets are prone to errors. There are no built-in controls over the information entered, and spreadsheets will not provide critical information in a decision-making format without an enormous amount of time and effort. Use tools that are designed for record keeping and deliver reports and key performance measures on demand — it will make your life easier and improve your business.
Have you established a solid team? – If you are going to be successful, you’re going to need a team of people to make it happen. You are an expert in your field, and that is why you decided to start your own business, right? Well what about other areas of the business, where specialised skills are also needed? By putting together a team of professionals, that have the skills to benefit your business, you will give your business a higher chance of survival.
Are you thinking of starting your own business? Cementing the right foundation from the start can help you avoid these common mistakes. We have over 27 years experience working with small business. Success stories come from when businesses have a very clear plan from the start. We can help you with your business plan.
Register now for our FREE small business workshops. Held the first Tuesday of every month in The McMahon Osborne Group Boardroom, at 5.30pm.
First workshop is Tuesday 7th March 2017, at 5,30pm.
To register click on the link below