One of the main things to know how to make your business successful?
One of the main questions I get asked is to how to make your business successful, to many business owners this is mystery. I have identified this is the top thing I believe a small business owner needs to do to succeed where others fail. Having worked with many business owners the most important thing they fail to do effectively is to plan. Planning gives clarity of vision and focus on the end objective. To many this seems simplistic and insulting. It has been the single most important change to most of my client’s businesses. In many ways it is obvious, however, so many business owners can never find the time because they spend their lives putting out fires that could be prevented by effective planning. Yes, it does take time to do properly but it saves so much time once it is done and documented.
So how does planning teach you how to make your business successful?
Half a day or a whole day (depending on the size of your business) is almost always the most productive time a business owner spends all year. At first business owners who are time poor can only see a planning session as an interruption to their enormously busy schedule and most are initially convinced it is a waste of time. By focusing your attention on the future direction of the business and what you actually want to achieve provides focus, clarity and direction.
A daily task list is a simple way that can teach you how to make your business successful!
The majority of business owners do not have a clear focus on the tasks that need to be done each day and how to prioritise them. Instead of having a clear and focused agenda they allow themselves to be distracted by issues that are important to other people. (See my article on Time Management). By clearly planning and placing the things that you need to get done each day on your daily list you will learn to become focused on the planned expectations for each day.
Delegation or Outsourcing will help you to make your business successful
Planning helps you to identify the things you need to do to achieve your end objective within the specified time-frame. By understanding the components of the things you have agreed to achieve, this then allows you to delegate some of these tasks to others who are either more qualified or tasks that are low dollar value. It is important to delegate tasks by setting clear and measurable milestones and guidelines rather than abdicating them and hoping for the best. Remember if you delegate a task to an employee they will only do the task or the parts that you can measure. In terms of low dollar tasks or repetitive tasks there are many outsourcing agencies such as Upwork (formerly Odesk), Fiverr, Elance where you can hire very competent staff by the hour, week, or project. Initially it is a good idea to hire new contractors by the project until you get to know them. Also consider the time difference especially if you hire contractors from Europe or the US. The real key is precise, unambiguous instructions, clear deadlines and follow up. You also tend to get what you pay for!
Is planning the only thing that a small business owner needs to do to be successful?
Of course the answer to this question is no. However, it is vitally important for any sized business to know what they want to achieve and what results to measure the business performance against. Is the business plan set in concrete? Again no! It should be a dynamic document but it should not be varied quickly or easily. The job of being an entrepreneur has never been easy and is not for everyone. Every successful entrepreneur knows how to make your business successful you must know where you are going and having a plan is the best way to reach your objective.