Does your business have what it takes to succeed?

All businesses share six key attributes, no matter how big or how small.  The key to success is applying these attributes optimally and simultaneously.  

Product / Service:  Having a great product or service is always a good start, but it is certainly not the finish line. Smart business owners will keep a sharp eye on their products or services. They can adjust their products or services to the needs of the consumer and client. In other words, the goods are continually evolving. It’s worth noting that customer service works hand in hand with the product or service. The product or service is no good if it is delivered poorly.

Customer Service / Customer Experience:  Customer service seems to be disappearing in today’s business environment.  Calling the cable company is a prime example.  In this upcoming series, we will talk about the different characteristics of customer service versus a customer experience.  Using both these methods appropriately will keep your consumers and clients coming back to your business.

Sales: Some companies are formed as sales organizations; other companies may have an in-house division for Sales.  Both share certain characteristics.  These types of companies perform activities such as distribution, advertising, selling, etc.  The primary focus is to achieve sales objectives, increase volume and maximize profit.  They are typically led by a Sales Manager with a specific sales program in place.  

Price Point: We all love the sound of “ching ching”! There are essential elements resulting in a valid sale, such as free consent from each party, competent parties, lawful objection, consideration (not limited to monetary), and transfer of ownership.  As a business owner, it is important to set the right price for your product or service.  This is called a price point, a scale of possible prices at which a product or service might be marketed.  Price is the amount of money required or expected for the product or service.  Similar but not the same.

Marketing & Content: There is a big misconception about marketing. Marketing should never be looked at as an expense but as an investment in the growth of your business. Marketing should be approached strategically and aligned with the business model. It is the key to the company’s growth and longevity.

Human Resources: An area still underutilized by many businesses. Highly talented, motivated, and well-trained employees are a must-have but don’t just appear without the proper planning, training, motivation, and fair compensation. A successful business owner views human resources as an investment cultivated and seasoned over time. 

Technology / Infrastructure: Building a business is like building a house. Just like a home needs a solid foundation, a company needs a reliable infrastructure to support it. In today’s environment, technology has become the root of any infrastructure. A business can’t run efficiently or effectively without the right equipment, machinery, systems, software, and technology.   

Accounting / Taxes:  We all love the sound of “ching ching”! Just as fast as money flows in, it can flow out. Keeping track of what comes in and flows out will reduce the risk of poor business decisions, tax issues, unnecessary liability, and expense. There are many tools and resources available to business owners. Knowing the books is “being in the knowing.”

In summary, most business owners are already filling most of these hats, no matter how small. For example, a small one-person business owner introduces the product and works on the infrastructure while doing the company accounting himself. As revenue starts to come in, the business owner puts aside 20% for marketing. Marketing increased sales by 30%, allowing the business owner to hire an accountant further and improve his infrastructure. The infrastructure improvement equated to newer, more efficient software and updated systems. This improved efficiency by providing more convenient options to the clients resulting in another increase in revenue. One year later, the business owner can hire staff.