Business talk with Steve Elsom, December 2020
It has been a tough year which has tested our resilience and resolve.
With the 1st January in sight……why not take a few moments to capture what you and your business would like to achieve in 2021. In keeping with the ‘twelve days of Christmas’ festive theme, here is a compilation of ideas which I have seen adopted by businesses that I have worked with over the years. It’s not an exhaustive list, and I am sure that you will think a several of your own….and if it can make a positive difference to you and your business in 2021…it will be well worth the investment of time – won’t it?!
1. Set goals. What are you planning to achieve in 2021? Commit your plan to paper (or an electronic file), and remember – be ambitious but realistic.
2. Delight your customers. Seek their feedback and ask ‘how could we improve your experience for next time’?
3. Know your numbers. Profit and Loss, Margins and Key Performance Indicators.
4. Review your pricing policy. When was the last time that you did this? Any increase, can make a difference to your bottom line profit.
5. Review your cash flow and your terms of trade. Cash is arguably the most important commodity in your business – guard it jealously!
6. Be on top of debtors. Send out invoices in a timely fashion and have a system to follow up.
7. Have an ongoing Customer Care cycle. Keep in regular dialogue with your customers via email, social media and targeted campaigns.
8. Review your costs. Consider how to reduce ‘waste’ in your business…which cost time and money. By reducing ‘waste’, you will improve profitability.
9. Have a ‘trusted advisor’. Someone to talk to, someone to share ideas with, someone who will listen.
10. Mystery shop the competition. Either in person or on-line…. it’ll perhaps tell you whether your business is in need of a ‘makeover’.
11. Review your work-life balance. Have you got it right? Too many hours in the business can lead to stress, which can affect your judgement. Take time to have some fun!
12. Remind yourself why you started your own business. Refresh those energies, re-ignite that enthusiasm and ‘reach for the stars’!
Have a very Merry Christmas, and a successful New Year, and if you would like to engage with me as your Trusted Advisor (number 9 above!), you know where to find me.