Every business can get stale. Also, entrepreneurs can get out of touch with how their business is really doing. Here are some ideas to consider seeing if your business needs a spring or (any time of the year for that matter) make over.
1. Review your Mission Statement:
Why are you in business? What do you want to accomplish with your business? Is there something more that would inspire you and your employees? So often, mission statements become meaningless words printed in some dusty document or ignored hanging on a wall. Look at your statement. Does it still fit? Do you feel excited about the message it conveys? If not, spend some time with it and rework it. Check it out with the members of your organization. Does it still have power to inspire and move them forward? A clear concise mission statement is that beacon that guides a company. If yours does not, fix it.
2. Refresh Your Business Image:
America is taken with makeover mania. From plastic surgery, to rooms, houses and whole towns, people want to look better and as a result feel better. Wisdom tells us that true change starts from within, but now and then it is good to take a critical look at your company’s image and see if it is in need of a lift. If you own a store, or have an office that clients visit, look at it with fresh eyes. Is it clean, up to date and uncluttered? Are the signs in good shape? Are carpets clean and all the furniture in top repair? What about your business card and logo? Do they represent the professional image you wish to portray? Are your brochures and other marketing materials top notch?
3. What About Your Image?
How does your physical presence and that of employees affect your business? If your employees wear uniforms, are they nice looking, practical and easy to maintain? Would an upgrade of your clothing, hairstyle or in the case of women, make up make a difference? Just remember, birds of a feather do business together and you have only 3 seconds to make a first impression. Don’t let something as easy to fix as personal grooming or tired, inappropriate clothing hurt your chances for business. Pretentiousness is not what I am talking about. That can be even more off putting. Just dress honestly…and a little up.
4. Systems Efficient?
Look at every system in your organization, from how the phone is answered, to follow-up on completed projects… and everything in between. Good systems make your business run smoothly, eliminate confusion and guarantee the success of your company. The way to start is to think about what happens from the moment a new customer/client is contacted. How are they treated? Are their questions handled properly, is paperwork handled efficiently, are products and services delivered as expected in the time promised. How are problems dealt with? Your industry may have other systems to consider.
5. It’s About Time:
I want you to think about how you spend your time in your business. Are you spending it all working in your business and no time working on your business?
When I am hired by a company to help them improve their business, so often, I hear them say, “But I can’t afford to take time to work on my business… I’m too busy.” I say, you can’t afford not to take the time. I have seen it over and over and it is a sure fire recipe for disaster. Time and again, I see business owners and managers ignore what is going on with the big picture and suddenly everything is out of control, and they don’t have a clue about when, let alone how it happened.
If you take nothing else, take this: You must be the captain of your own ship. You cannot be down in the galley, constantly rowing and expect to get where you want to go. So many self employed professionals think that if they just work harder, longer hours, they will arrive where they want to be. I say put down the oars now and then, and get up on the deck. Check the compass and the wind, mind the sails and breathe fresh air with renewed confidence of a safe landing.
Source by Louise Abbott