Kyla Nievera, Negosentro.com | According to Forbes, about 90% of new startups fail. If you are smart and lucky enough to be in the winning 10%, it’s great news. However, this is not the end but merely the beginning. Now comes a much more serious challenge – maintaining the business. In order to successfully run a business, you must possess many qualities, and one of them is a desire to constantly learn and improve your skills. This is necessary, but not enough to maintain a business. This is why you need to create a long-term plan with several main points. The most important thing you need to know is that you cannot wander aimlessly; you need to have a solid strategy and stick to it. Be strict with yourself and make sure you don’t procrastinate since it takes time for this plan to show results and, as you know, time is of the essence. Therefore, here are a few suggestions about what you should focus on.
The first thing you need to do is set your priorities straight. You need to determine what your main goal for the next six months is. There should be other, short-term goals as well, but your main focus should be on your priority plan. Those are the results that should happen after all the effort you’re going to invest. Your goals are the beginning of your plan and everything you do from this point on should be in the best interest of those goals.
Your next step should be SWOT (the analysis of your company’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats). In order to accomplish all of your goals, you need to be well aware of your company’s strongest and weakest points. Create an objective analysis of these four important traits for your business and it will be a great point from which you can move forward and work on your weaknesses as well as nurture your strengths.
Ask for feedback
Don’t forget what is essential for your company – customers. Any kind of feedback is important, especially if it’s negative. Don’t be vain, keep in mind that the negative criticism can and should be a part of your goals in order to learn how to improve your business. You want to satisfy your customers since they are vital to your company’s survival. Respond well to criticism, thank every customer willing to leave a comment and ask your customers for their opinions about the future functioning of your company. They will be grateful and you won’t have to guess what they want.
Create transformation teams
In order to run a successful business, you need to let some things go. That means you cannot be in charge of everything. If you’re wondering why, it’s simply because one cannot do ten things at the same time and be equally efficient at all of them. This is why you need to assign a team, or rather teams, which will work on accomplishing your company’s half-year goals. Put your most trusted employees in charge of each team and have them report to you.
Having a proper IT support is mandatory, especially nowadays when everything is done using technology. You can’t even imagine how much harm IT glitches can cause to your company. There are companies like extremely skilled Brisk Technology that will ease all your IT-related troubles since everything needs to be secured and well-functioning.
Have a safety net
While working on your goals, try not to get so involved that you forget about your regular customers and affairs. Cherish the relationships you already have and don’t forget to award loyalty. Make sure to give special offers to your regular customers and send them greeting cards and special discounts. Keeping your old clients is just as important as attracting new ones.
Write everything down
Another thing you need to bear in mind is the importance of writing things down. Having everything in your head simply won’t do, especially at this level of running a business. Writing your plan down makes it real and harder to disregard. Highlighting goals and deadlines will make both you and your coworkers actually respect them, while keeping them only in your head makes them much more flexible and prone to change.
Running your own business is like raising a child, in a way. They both need love, attention and commitment. You need to invest in your business, both financially and intellectually in order for it to grow, become stronger, smarter and more successful. As long as you have enthusiasm, motivation and are willing to work hard in order to improve your business, you have nothing to fear. Try to be strict, but fair and always keep an open mind. Just make sure you surround yourself with trustworthy associates that are loyal and hardworking.