Owning a small business is equal to a lot of hard work. Even though the it is small, and some people might not think it would be hard to run, small business owners face troublesome issues every day. However, most owners would agree that owning their own enterprise is its own reward.
There are many challenges for small business proprietors to face. Since most small ventures are also sole proprietorships, there is no one else for the owner to turn to help fix whatever problems the enterprise is facing. Additionally, a small business owner has to make decisions for every aspect of it, from good business resources, such as what products to order, who to hire and fire, accounting and payroll, the design of it, its insurance, not to mention the actual day to day running of the enterprise itself.
A larger enterprise has someone for each of those tasks, so the workload is spread out over more people. Also, in a small business, the owner can almost never take a vacation, because the operation needs him or her there practically all the time it is open, and sometimes when it is not.
There are many financial decisions that small business owners must face as well. Especially with a new venture, keeping track of finances is incredibly important. If the gross margin (which is sales minus variable costs) is not always greater than the fixed costs of the enterprise, then the business is likely to go bankrupt.
If this happens, and if the enterprise was undercapitalized, then the business owner becomes responsible for paying any outstanding debt from his or her own pocket. If the business owner has invested all of his or her money into the company, or if they have no other means of income, then it is very likely that the company will go bankrupt as well.
There are many hidden taxes for small businesses, and sometimes the taxes alone are enough to drive a small company into bankruptcy. However, with proper funding and knowledge of good management advice, becoming a small company owner can be a smart decision.
Owning a small enterprise is hard. Small business owners probably have one of the hardest jobs that there is. To be a good enterprise owner, it takes a unique kind of person who likes many challenges. It may seem impossible at first, but with hard work and good company practices, the effort will offer great returns.
Starting a very small business is easy. The real challenge is keeping it up and running. For some service businesses all that may be required is a cell phone and a business card to let the world know that you are available for business. Some product businesses may only need a place to sell (booth at a flea market) and the product. There are a number of ways a person can get into business; it really is a matter of staying in business.
The main thing that will help people stay in business is returning profits back into the business. However, for very small businesses that is easier said than done because some need any profits for survival. A person gets into business to make money for rent, bills, utilities, etc. So, when profit is made money is spent, leaving nothing to keep the business going or for it to grow.
The best compromise is to establish a percentage of the net profits for the owner, the rest to return into the business. Capital is always needed to grow and also is a buffer for unforeseen circumstances. Equipment and vehicles break, which could completely shut down a very small business if that equipment is critical. Another good expenditure is for possibly adding an employee. Planning to expand will probably involve getting an employee at some point to double productivity.
However, even without any worries concerning capital reinvestment, being a very small business does have a benefit. The business can very carefully grow, adding expenses as needed. However, those very lean start-up days will show an entrepreneur just how lean the business can operate. It does not take throwing away money for offices and for television commercials. An owner will know that their office can be the front seat of their vehicle with a spiral notebook and a cell phone. Their best marketing may be a business card given out personally. They know to sidestep the traps of status.
It’s an understatement to say that small business hiring is integral for America’s economy. Two out of every three new jobs in the country is created through a small company – not a big corporation.
First of all, why are small businesses so important for hiring? One would speculate that big businesses, with their war-chests of reserve capital, would have the advantage in hiring. One reason may have to do with the disparity of success between service sector businesses and goods producers. A large proportion of small businesses provide services due to their lack of ability to build goods on scale.
Another reason for small business hiring success could be the simple fact that these companies are small. Small means the ability to change direction on a dime. If the eco-friendly sector is rapidly growing and shows promise, a small business can quickly adapt to the needs of the market by re-branding and offering new services. This in turn allows the business to hire specialists within that growing sector or niche.
Small companies also have a few inherent advantages versus large corporations in the hiring game. One big advantage is the ability to offer pre-IPO stock, which big public companies can no longer do. This can win over talented employees who are in it for the long run.
Smaller businesses also often provide employees with more freedom, both creatively and physically. On the creative side of things, an employee of a small business is more likely to have their voice heard and see the impact of their decisions in the business’s output. Physically, smaller organizations are also more likely to allow work at home arrangements and enforce less stringent hours.
The gap between small and big business hiring is also being minimized through the use of technology. Large corporations often have complex internal applicant tracking technologies at work – software solutions tailor made for the company’s recruiting department. Nowadays, small companies can leverage the power of a tailor-made applicant tracking solution for a fraction of the cost and still get the same mileage out of the software. Modern day hiring software lives in the cloud and can be accessed and utilized as easily as a web app like Facebook.
All in all, small companies will continue to power job growth in the US, even as big corporations get back on track. Although they are often seen as ‘the little guys,’ smaller businesses are certainly making a big impact.
Many small business owners forget to identify and define who their target market is, which hinders them from completely capitalizing on consumer buying. In order for them to be successful they must have a clear understanding of who the consumer is, what their needs are and their purchase behavior. If small business owners have a complete understanding of whom their consumers’ are, it will encourage customer retention, help define their business niche, and allow them to market their products in a profitable way.
Small business owners must identify their consumer by demographics and not by a broad spectrum. The more they know about their consumers the more they increase their chances of success. If they can’t identify their target market, they increase their risk of failure and prohibit the business from being consumer focused. Companies that don’t understand the importance of being consumer focused suffers from limited growth potential and they risk wasting money and valuable resources on marketing to the wrong consumer. It’s not a smart business practice to assume that all consumers are alike. This assumption prohibits the business from finding its place in the market.
When researching their target markets, small businesses must be specific when defining their consumer and avoid general classifications. The biggest issue business owners have when finding information about their target market is information overload. There is a wealth of information on the internet but knowing what information is needed can be a hang up for most new businesses. In order to minimize getting drowned with useless information it is best for new businesses to come up with research questions that can guide them through their research. They should compile a list of questions specifically related to their business and consumer.
Small business owners should be well informed about their consumers’ demographics such as age, gender, income, education level, occupation, family/household size and region/geography. If a small business objective is to offer affordable daycare service to single mothers who can’t afford it at the full price then the companies target market should reflect that. If the small business defines its target market as women with kids, it would mean that their service is open to all women with children of all ages. With this broad defining, the company wouldn’t be fulfilling its objective of offering affordable daycare service to single mothers in need. However if the small business redefined its target market as single mother households with incomes of $15,000- $35,000 who have children between the ages of 6 mos.- 11 years of age, it will allow them to really impact the market and target a specific group. This not only helps small business owners define their target market but develop their business niche.
It would be wonderful if all small business owners could do everything for everyone but the truth is a small business can only do so much. If small business owners settle on servicing a specific part of the market they can increase their chances of success. All major companies have a specific target market, for example Wal-Mart brags about offering low prices that help their customers live better lives, which are directed toward bargain shoppers in a target market of low to middle class families. They market and offer products to a specific group and because of this it have been a big key to their success.
Business owners must take note of the importance of understanding their target market as a necessary part of the start up process and that it shouldn’t be ignored. Before potential business owners begin business they should invest the necessary time in a thorough research on defining their consumer. By taking the necessary time to identify and define their target market, business owners can reap the benefits that will help sustain their business. It will eliminate wasteful cost and time spent marketing their service or product to the wrong consumer.
Small business subcontracting plans necessarily mean a large business enterprise sub letting or taking help from small businesses. In large business outfits, the amount of office supplies is great hence a small business firm is contacted and a contract is signed with them to provide office materials regularly.
oA subcontract is broadly defined as an understanding agreed upon by a prime contract and subcontractor to provide goods or services needed for complementing the performance of the prime contract.
oThe service a small business provides, however, is not necessarily under the prime contract; it should satisfy the prime contractor’s ordinary overhead requirements attributable to the prime contract.
This entire process of contracting out a part of the project to a small business firm is known as small business subcontracting. The contract is made formal only if the costs involved in providing materials exceed $500.000 for the entire period of performance.
oa small business subcontracting plan must state an expected amount of business that the prime contractor expects to award to small business contractors
However, it is untrue that all business concerns need subcontracted businesses to reach the stage of completion.
oIn order to ensure completion, each subcontracting plan must name a manager or contract person, called a plan administrator, in charge of promoting compliance under the plan.
Only when the magnitude of the business project demands calculated subcontracts sub recipients are brought into discussions.
The subcontractor’s SBSP mentions the materials to be purchased, the total amount of money that will be spent on each small business outfit and the percentage of money that has been stipulated for supplies and/or services that these purchases represent.
Small business concerns usually used as sub recipients of such huge business projects are:
oSmall Disadvantaged Business concernoMinority InstitutesoVeteran Owned Small Business concernoWomen Owned Small Business concernoHistorically Black Colleges and Universities
Rather than waiting for communication, a small business can contact prime contractors directly to inform them of its small business.
A small business can approach agencies themselves to show inclination of its availability for subcontracting.
A SBSP is prepared by the principal investigator of the project. The principal investigator takes up the responsibility of meeting the goals set in the plan. If the SBSP fails for any reason, the contractor may be made responsible for the damage and the business concern handling the project may be denied new contracts.
Once the SBSP is prepared, it is presented as a part of the business proposal. It is open to negotiation.
oIn soliciting subcontracts, prime contractors often seek several small business sources to insure they are obtaining a fair price
oIf a small business is dissatisfied with the treatment it receives from the prime contractor, it cannot protest to the agency or General Accounting Office.
The principal investigator informs the Procurement Resource Services (PRS) administrator of the need of subcontractors. The PRS then aids investigators in identifying suppliers as per the requirement of the project.
oPrime contractors are increasingly aware of the need to subcontract with small businesses for delegating work.oCertain small business contracts stress the possibility of dollar penalties on those failing to meet their subcontracting plans.
Typical samples small business subcontracting plans require the following information:
oIdentification Data – name of the company, address, date of preparation of SBSP, Solicitation Number and Item or Service requiredoType of Plan – individual, master or commercialoGoals – estimated dollar value of all planned subcontracting, estimated dollar value and percentage of total planned subcontracting to large business concerns, estimated dollar value and percentage of total planned subcontracting to small business concerns etcoDetails of Program AdministratoroEquitable OpportunityoReporting and Co-operation time lineoRecord KeepingoTimely payments to SubcontractorsoDescription of Good Faith Report
Ask anyone who runs a small business, “So, what do you do?” most of the time they will say “I’m a business owner,” this may be right, but what exactly does it mean? “Business owner” is a title, not a job description. In order to run a successful business you need to have job descriptions and duties clearly outlined and defined for all of your employees, including yourself.
It’s very easy for a business owner to fall into one of two bad behaviors. First you could be extremely hands-on and micromanage. Here your time is wasted on tasks that were originally delegated to subordinates. The second behavior that is easy for small business owners’ to fall into is constantly managing administrative duties. Both of these behaviors seem right, but they are traps, they don’t allow you to spend time improving your core business or your bottom line.
One of the most useful internal assessments you can do for your business is to write a detailed job description for each employee on your payroll; from the intern all the way up to you, the business owner. This provides you with a written description of what every employee that works for you is doing and how they are managing their individual responsibilities. By listing your individual employees’ responsibilities you are holding them accountable for their work. This paves the way for a streamlined and organized work flow, rather than a staff of employees who have their hands in thirty different projects that leaves you unaware of who is doing what. Most importantly, by defining who is supposed to be doing what, you can see which employees are not living up to your expectations and which employees are excelling and worthy of praise and positive reinforcement.
Here’s an experiment to try: log all of your activities that you do for work in a journal and keep it accurate down to the minute. At the end of the week look at how much time you spend doing tasks that could be feasibly delegated to your employees. You will be amazed how much of your time you spend answering general inquiries and doing administrative tasks. Create a, “stop wasting my time with these duties” list, and whenever a trivial or clerical task that is on your list comes up, delegate it to one of your subordinates so you have time to focus on your core responsibilities as a business owner. There are a million different things going on for a small business at any given time anytime, and as a business owner it is all too easy to get caught up in those small picture goals. As your business expands, and you hire more people to delegate your work to, it is important to actually let your subordinates do their job with some independence, and not micro-manage their duties that once fell on to your shoulders.
The next part is the hardest: writing out your job description. Once you have stopped wasting your time on day-to-day administrative duties it is your job to take on the big picture goals you want your company to achieve. You must outline, implement and follow a strategy to improve the bottom line of your business. While executing your strategy for growth and increased revenue, you may need to hire new employees. As a business owner it is your job to seek out the right candidates for the job, educate them in the ways of your company and its culture and help mold them into ideal members of your workforce. Finally, being the owner of your business makes you the public face of your company, meaning you are integral when it comes to business development and acquiring new clients.
Even though a lot of business owner’s consider this the least favorite part of their job it is critical to stay current and aware of the internal culture of the company and the public image your business projects. Your business culture communicates more about your business than the words that you say; cultivating it is critical to your success.
By moving away from a clerical and administrative role you are freeing yourself up to improve your business and focus on your business strategy, insuring your company grows both in size and bottom line.
Small business owners considering a blog to enhance their website should review the different methods of integrating the content into their main site. Three options for blogging will be reviewed with suggestions to help you maximize the value to your visitors and search engines. A blog is an easy method for adding fresh content to your site without paying a web developer for each new page created.
Blogs, aka weblogs, first began as personal daily journals. An online diary with what you had for lunch does not seem like a practical way to promote a small business. The vast majority of blogs are still personal and non-commercial, while others have become monetized by including advertisements. Blogging for business is a trend that deserves attention.
Times have changed. Small business blogs are a great opportunity to provide your customers advice, news, and reviews. The value a blog provides to small business owners is fresh content that you may easily add to your site. Websites that are launched and collect dust without growing will not be search engine magnets. A good blog should result in your site being visited and indexed by the major search engines frequently.
It’s important to understand the structure of a blog compared to your commercial website.
The big difference between your site and the blog is how each is created. Most websites are done in HTML. Individual pages are usually created by a web designer with a significant cost per page. Blogs use templates which allow the owner to easily create posts from a control panel. Each post becomes a new page, so adding one a week adds 52 pages to your website per year. Several major online service companies allow you to create a free blog, and you may begin adding content immediately.
For the small business owner, the template and control panel with automatic uploading makes it easy. Where you choose to host determines how your content is integrated into your site. This can be a critical decision when part of your goal is search engine optimization.
Here are 3 common methods for hosting your newly created blog content, and explanations of each.
1. Free hosting by the blog service provider. Blogger by Google, WordPress and TypePad are well known.
2. Setup a sub domain of your main www domain which replaces the www with “blog” in your web address.
3. Setup a subfolder “blog” below the root directory so the address would be your www domain plus /blog.
Free hosting is the method of choice for owners of most personal blogs. Very small commercial businesses may use free blog hosting to take advantage of the zero cost startup. The free blog is fine. Reconsider hosting. If you have a website and host your blog with a free service, your content is remotely located without any connection to your main site. For most small business owners, the other options will yield better results.
The sub domain option attaches your blog to your main www domain. For the sake of clarity, the sub domain can be any word, and I used “blog” here as an example only. The normal address with www followed by dot and then your domain name, and finally dot and the suffix com, biz, info, etc. becomes a similar address with blog followed by dot, your domain, dot, and the suffix. For your main website to grow and benefit, the new blog content must be integrated with your original site, and not viewed by search engines as a completely new website.
The subfolder “blog” creates a longer www name, but the disadvantage is minimal. The major advantage is your content is no longer remote or separate from your domain. When search engines visit your site to index content having the blog content in a subfolder means it is indexed as part of your main site. With the other methods, if your original website was launched and never changed, it remains stale. Instead of a dynamic new addition, you have a dusty commercial site in one place, plus a separate advice, news or review site that grows and grows.
Tip: Consider paying for a custom template to match your main website. Blog templates are provided by each of the major service companies that offer free blog hosting. A person can sign up for a free blog with free hosting and be publishing in minutes. The limited choice of color schemes is unlikely to match your existing website, so a near or exact match is preferred.
In conclusion, you may want to search for blogs related to your business and see what other people are doing before you jump in and regret choices later. Consider your purpose. Avoid blatant self-promotion and provide visitors with valuable news, advice, or insight into your business to help and inform rather than sell. Link to your main site from the blog and keep the hard sell there.
Finally, other add-on options for your blog are available as free services to allow visitors to subscribe to posts, notify blog directories each time you post, plus other methods to promote your blog. Check the help files and forums of the services you are considering to learn as you go. Happy blogging!
Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a business that consistently grows and another that struggles just to make ends meet? Or why a business that was started in a basement of a home can outperform some of the best-run “big” companies in sales and profits?
Two businesses, operating in the same marketing arena and selling the same products or services, can have extraordinarily different results. How can one business continually grow and prosper, while the other struggles? How can one business owner run a highly successful business while still spending a good portion of his or her time away from the business on trips and vacations with the family, and another owner work day and night only to see his business fail?
Such questions have always intrigued me. In my quest to answer them, I sought input from successful business owners. I became a student of business. I read every business book I could get my hands on. I enrolled in seminars and courses across the country. I listened to audio and videotapes of some of the greatest minds in business.
What I learned has been truly transformational. In this article, I will impart to you some of what I have learned. For the most part, there is no such thing as a successful or unsuccessful business; there are successful or unsuccessful people, entrepreneurs who run businesses. Becoming a successful entrepreneur requires a certain self-image, a certain mindset. I like to refer to this mindset as the
“5 Habits of Highly Successful Small Business Owners.”
Here they are:
Habit #1: Have a clear vision of their business, and commit their vision to paper
“A man to carry on a successful business must have imagination. He must see things as in a vision, a dream of the whole thing.”
Charles M Schwab, American stockbroker
The chances of your small business’ success improve substantially if you have a clear vision of what you want your business to look like, and what you want it to accomplish for you in the future. Your vision is your dream for the future of your business and it should delineate the path you will take to turn that dream into reality. You need a crystal-clear vision, one that you can communicate clearly, with vitality and a strong sense of commitment. Everyone involved in your business must comprehend your vision and, even more important, must believe in its success as much as you do.
Setting direction and guiding the business toward reaching your vision will make it successful. Vision is the owner’s business philosophy. It’s his “double vision” – his ability to keep the business’ long-term dream in mind while micro-managing the business on a day-to-day, hour-by-hour basis.
Successful entrepreneurs commit their vision to paper. In all my years in business, I have found that not doing so is the single most fatal error a business owner can make. There’s a direct correlation between having a well-thought-out, written vision statement and the success of your business.
Your vision should be a written statement of what your business will be when it is complete. It is a detailed picture of the future – what your business will look like, act like, smell like, feel like, and how it will perform when it is fully developed. Some of the things your written vision statement should include are: (1) the line of business you are in, (2) your company size, (3) the markets it will serve – demographics and psychographics, (4) the number of employees you will have, (5) the number of locations that you will operate from, and (6) what competitive advantages will differentiate your business from your competitors’.
Habit #2: Put the proper systems in place
You need systems to be able to deliver a product or service in a predicable and consistent way. All successful businesses have a “how we do it here” manual, also referred to as a “policy and procedures” manual. Standardize your procedures so that everyone knows what they are and how to do them. These procedures involve production systems for your products or services, systems to deliver those products or services, systems to track new customers or clients, systems to help you keep up with your finances, systems to hire and train new employees, and the list goes on.
Look at the systems that operate within the McDonald’s chain. A McDonald’s in the Bronx operates exactly the same way as a McDonald’s in Palm Beach. It runs just as predictably and profitably in either place. Why? Because there is absolutely no area in which procedures are not specifically spelled out through documented systems. Every procedure is outlined so clearly that anyone can be put into the system and taught to function at an extremely efficient level in a very short time.
Documented systems can make a difference to your own time, as a business owner. Without such systems in place, everything depends on you. If something happened to you, even for a short period, the entire business would be thrown into chaos. With properly documented systems of management and organization, a key employee (even you!) could leave suddenly, and the business would not suffer. You could replace the employee with minimal disruption. As new problems come up, you can adjust the systems you have in place to accommodate the needed changes.
If you set up the right systems from the start, they help run the business. You can be free to spend your time however you wish: more personal time for yourself, more time for your family, your community, and more time to enjoy a richer, more balanced life.
Habit #3: Know what they don’t know and then quickly get the help to fill the void
Most small business owners don’t realize that having an occupation or skill does not necessarily equate to building a successful business around it. It takes different skills to build a business. Let me give you an example. A personal friend of mine, John Chang worked as an engineer for 12 years before he started his own engineering firm. He was considered to be one of the best engineers in his firm before he went on to start his own engineering company. But John had never run a business before, and he did not have the knowledge and skill to operate his new company successfully, despite his engineering expertise. There is a lesson to be learned. The sooner you, the business owner, develop entrepreneurial skills, the sooner you will turn your expertise into business success!
You will need a number of different skills; financial, marketing, management, and customer fulfillment skills are among those required if you want your business to run like a finely tuned machine.
Can you imagine an athlete training for the Olympic competition without a coach? Of course not! Nor can you develop these skills without qualified help. A business coach will help you think in a new way, show you how to stay on track with your plans, and ultimately achieve your vision.
Habit #4: Have a mindset of preeminence
Preeminent (adj.): excelling others, outstanding.
The business owner has to have the mindset to view his business as a product – not the product or service he is producing, but his whole business as the product. It’s an entirely new way of thinking, and as soon as such thinking is adopted in any business, the business begins to make massive leaps forward.
As the business owner, you have to learn how you can give your customers or clients the best possible experience; to enable others to see your business as a trusted, valued, respected, and expert advisor. This mindset can be applied to any type of business. You have the responsibility and the obligation to provide guidance and direction to your customers, and to give them the best short-term and long-term outcome.
Many times, I have seen business owners make one simple, but momentous, mistake. Instead of “falling in love” with their customers, they fall in love with the size of the company, growth of the company, number of employees, or the market share. The way to greatness today is to transfer your ultimate passion away from products and services, and toward people! By doing so you will begin to look at your business as a whole, and any interaction that the customers have with any parts of your business, as part of an overall experience. If you as the business owner are focused on making it the best, most rewarding, most fulfilling, most enjoyable experience for the customer or client, you will dominate everyone else in your business sector.
A strategy of preeminence – of excelling – along with the approach of looking at your business as a whole, is truly transforming. If this is the only idea from these 5 habits that you take to heart and adapt and implement, you will see a significant improvement in your business.
Habit #5: Work on their business, not just in it
The successful small business owner understands the real value and reward that is derived from working on the business rather then just working in the business. She understands that working on the business means viewing her business as a whole. She sees her business made up of various parts that integrate seamlessly to function as a whole.
Working on, instead of “in” the business is strategic work. It is the way businesses transform themselves from vision into reality. It requires asking strategic questions and then doing everything to find answers to those questions.
Smart entrepreneurs do the necessary strategic work, and regularly ask the following questions:
What is my market share?
Who is my ideal customer?
Where is my industry headed?
Who are my competitors?
What are my competitive advantages?
What are other successful businesses in my industry doing?
How do they market their product or service?
What are other successful businesses outside my industry doing?
What is the “experience” my customers are having with my business?
What is the “experience” customers are having at my competitor’s place of business?
“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.” –Albert Einstein
Every business faces a certain degree of risk; some of them can be controlled if appropriate action is taken to do so where as some are largely unpredictable and uncontrollable. Even when every aspect of the business is carefully considered and carefully planned and executed, a business could still face closure due to some factor that was beyond its control such as fire, tornado, tsunami, hurricanes, earthquakes, floods etc. When you carefully identify the risks that your business faces and take action accordingly to counter the risk, the business will certainly be successful.
Types of Risk for Small Businesses:
Some of the risks that small businesses face are overhead cost, cost of equipment, expected sales volume, salary cost, taxes, price charged for service or product, competitor’s actions, the local economy, changing trends, risk that the product may become obsolete. Other risks include damages from fire, water, natural calamities, intentionally inflicted damages, loss of data and property due to theft, machine breakdown forcing work to come to a standstill, cash flow problems that may force a business to close.
Every sector has its set of risks and the responsibility of the owner is to identify study and counter these risk factors. Loss of records due to fire or other such risks will make it impossible to determine the financial transaction details such as who has to pay or who has to be paid, making it impossible to bill or collect from customers.
Failure to obtain all necessary licenses and permits may be a risk that could close the business. Employees that may embezzle, liability losses, public liability, liability to employees, business could close temporarily due to ill health of its owner or due to his death, when a key employee who was invaluable is unable to continue etc. are some other risks that may hinder small business from functioning normally. When cash flow forecasts are inaccurate, the business runs the risk of taking bad decisions that could have been prevented such as applying for a large amount of loan that the business cannot really afford. Selecting unqualified personnel as key employees, disgruntled employees can be a risk too, as they can take a business to the cleaners suing the company no matter if they are right or wrong etc. are other types of risks for small businesses.
When you consider insuring your business, your agent would have identified all insurable risks and would have advised you to take certain precautions to counter/prevent them. However, the types of risks for small businesses vary according to the nature of the business, hence the owner should himself, also make an effort to identify the risks and effect good risk management techniques.Several firms offer their service as well as products that help in running a business easily.
Running a small business it tough work. It requires hours of dedication and usually takes more time from its owner by being a constant source of concern. There are four critical things to remember for the business beginner. These may seem rather obvious, but the sheer amount of work needed to run any operation can cause the obvious to be forgotten.
The first point to remember is sales! If there are no sales there is no income. There are no exceptions to the rule and whatever interruptions make come up in your business the centrality of sales can never be forgotten. Entrepreneurs with retail locations often get caught up in the ambience, look and feel of their stores. Many stores may require this for the types of products sold, but too much attention to ambience can be distracting as well as costly. The setting itself, the uniforms, the business cards, whatever the case may be should always be viewed in terms of the end goals – sales.
The second point which is intimately connected to the former is marketing. Proper marketing drives sales and hence the bottom line. Marketing may take different forms for different companies. Some exclusively use online marketing while others based on their product types or services, view more traditional forms of advertising as the best tried and true option. Costly options must always be weighed against the realistic results they might bring. Spending ten thousand dollars on a bill board may expose your product to thousands of people, but determining how likely they are to purchase based on this model is an example of critical market analysis that must be done.
The third consideration to remember is employees. The right or wrong employees can make or break an operation. You cannot do or fulfill every position or need in your company, so trusted and well trained employees are hard to find and can be harder to maintain. The right employee who is willing to learn and take the initiative can drive sales on their own or allow you to model your business in such a way for you to create more income without having concentrate on the managing every task you assign. The last major issue to consider is the operational side of our business. Determining what the logistics of your business are critical. Knowing when your deliveries arrive, how much inventory you need, what the best shipping options are all pieces required to success. They can prove as important as marketing and sales, since the inability to fill orders can result in dissatisfied customers and cancelled orders.