The beginning of the year is often a stressful time for small business owners. The holidays are over, and with it, your clients and potential clients relaxed attitudes. They want contracts to sign, projects to approve, and products they can see. And while it’s easy to get caught up in all that it takes to run a successful business this time of year, it’s important to take a step back and make sure you’re doing everything you can to keep your business growing, not just staying open. If you feel like your fire is burning out, or just not burning as brightly as you’d like, try these:
Improve Your Onboarding Methods
If you’re a B2B business, are you happily taking any client that says they want your services? If you are, you could be setting yourself up for more stress and aggravation than it’s worth. Just because someone says they want to be a client doesn’t want them a good fit for you. It may be scary to think about turning away money, but trying to please an ill-informed client who will end up asking for their money back when they don’t get what they want or a client who exhausts all of your employees so you lose other clients isn’t the way to run a growing business. Improve your onboarding methods to weed out the type of clients who won’t be mutually beneficial in the long run.
Get a Mentor
No one person is great at every aspect of running a business. Maybe you know a lot about fitness, but handling the accounting aspect of running your gym is confusing. Or maybe you love the behind-the-scenes aspect of your business, but have a hard time with customer interactions. This is where having a successful entrepreneur as your mentor will help you in areas you fall short in. This is where networking will come in; BNI and industry-related events are great ways to meet those who can help you.
Recharge Your Batteries
If you wait for a time that you have nothing to do in order to take a breather, you’ll never take one! It’s so easy to become so completely wrapped up in the day-to-day issues and activities of your business that you put off breaks altogether , and the small ‘breaks’ you do take are spent checking emails and making calls. The trouble with trying to go without a time-out is that you lose the big picture, as well as the ability to look at problems objectively and strategically. Not only that but you become less productive and less creative. If you’re managing your employees, you’re probably not quite as understanding either. Give everyone the best of you by taking some time for yourself!
Fire Up Your Team
Some of your staff may need some motivation right now, so be there for them as a leader and a friend. Now is the time to keep them dedicated to your company with fun activities to bond as a group, work they can be passionate about, and verbal praise. With gloomy weather and tons of deadlines to meet, even the best employee may find themself needing you to fire them up. You may need to let some people who aren’t working out go every once in awhile, but getting in new employees won’t be a substitute for the effective leadership, motivation and career development that you can provide.
Focus on Quality
All of the marketing materials and trained staff in the world won’t make up for a product or service that is less than satisfactory. Make sure you’re company is doing quality work, delivering something that you can be proud is associated with your name.
Implement a Smarketing Team
As your company grows, it requires more and more specialized staff members. Traditionally, people who are talented artists are hired as Designers, natural-born speakers are employed in Sales, those who are trained writers are hired as Marketers, and so on. Your modern businesses can be and should be run differently though, thanks to the invention and implementation of the internet into our daily lives. The strife between Sales and Marketing can lead to a steady decline in profit, so it’s crucial to your growth to coalign their goals. This is called a Smarketing Team. This Team will work together to create strategies for your brand, score Leads that come in, and contact those most likely to convert to being a customer.
Only by seeing how everyone is beneficial toward the common goal will you and all of your staff find a way to grow your small business. Remember, you’re all in this together! Smarketing is the best way for your company to conduct business, so now that you’re ready to learn more about Lead Scoring download our free eBook Lead Scoring: The Smarketer’s Guide for tips on how to get started.