To be an owner whether your company is privately or publicly held, as an executive leader you are held accountable by the profits and losses of the company, whether those are the originated by your staff, your own behavior, a set of VC companies, or public shareholders. In the end you are the owner/operator. A fundamental part of overcoming business failure is rooted in the mindset you have. It begins with a flexible and positive attitude and a willingness to change. Winston Churchill stressed this vital factor by saying, “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.” Failure, including when running a business, is part of life. However, there are those owners who neglect to act, the tell themselves the solutions of the problems make sense, yet fail to act. The owner will claim they have it under control. That they know what the problem is and how to address it. But when given the option, there is the fundamental lack of reaching out for help. It may be that they are afraid to let themselves be exposed. However, you are exposing yourself to a greater degree when you fail to act on what you now know is a problem that isn’t going anywhere, until you act on it that is.
There are ways to combat this narrative:
Think ahead. What outcomes do you want for your business? Where would you like the company to be in the coming months and years? Adopt a Forward-Thinking Attitude keeping in mind that problems need to be addressed not swept under the rug and that change is a good thing. So many times, I’ve ran into owners who don’t use technology “because it confuses them” or worse yet, is that they give control of what limited platform they have to people who have no business touching a website, or going onto social media accounts. It’s imperative that you have a grounded strategy. Having a marketing strategy is key to success, it can promote
*Your mission statements
*The products or services you will offer
*Your business niches
*Ways to find prospects
*Ways to position yourself against your competitors
And yet with that said, one “slip up” can create havoc on your business whether it’s by a disgruntled employee who has the only access to your accounts, or a member of management team that has no clue what they are doing and accidentally deletes all your log in information, or infects your system with malware because they are not technological aware.
So, what do we do?
Carry out Frequent SWOT Analyses of Your Business System (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis is an examination of the internal and external areas of your business. The aim of this exercise is to identify areas that are working and those that are not.
Strengths are good internal factors within the business. Things are working in this area. Therefore, develop this part of your business. Use it as a model to build on.
Weaknesses are damaging internal factors. Something is not working properly. Perhaps it’s your sales and marketing strategy. Look at how to make immediate changes, do something different, or stop what you’re doing.
Opportunities come from external factors and represent good prospects for the future. Capitalize on these ventures, and optimize them.
Threats are adverse external factors such as your competitors. Set goals to make improvements in the areas of your business affected by this problem.
To prepare a SWOT analysis, begin by making a list of your identifiable strengths and weaknesses. Ask yourself where you would like your business to be in the future. Look at where you are now. Use the results of your SWOT analysis to design the goals you intend to accomplish and to develop a plan of action. And last and just as important Manage Cash Flow Efficiently, employees do not work for free, bouncing paychecks is a quick way to lose good staff, and your distributors don’t like to hound you for the products and services you have been rendered either. If you don’t like your clients “stiffing” you, then keep that in mind when dealing with your vendors and distributors.