According to SBA estimates, over 627,000 new businesses start up every year. People come up with new ideas, models, and creations that they believe will improve the world in some way. However, at the same time, 595,000 of those businesses will fail the first year that they are open. This happens because companies often do a number of things wrong. The top reasons why a business fails is because they hire poor management, they underestimate the number of funds they will be using, or they aren’t able to grow and gain customers. By following these time-tested techniques, you will be able to avoid all of those mistakes and keep your business flourishing for years to come.
1. The Customer is Always Right
It might sound cliche since the saying is said often, but it’s true--the customer is always right. In your business, you need to focus on your customer service if you want to succeed. The customer is the blood of the company. They are who fund you and help the business to grow. The customer can provide referrals to their friends and help you to gain a great reputation in the community. To improve your customer service, you should plan to train your employees weekly on how to communicate with customers, and they can resolve customer concerns. During the trainings, pose questions that are commonly asked by customers in your industry. Then, role play with the employees to make sure that they understand the key concepts. Put your best employees in front to be the ones who will be interacting directly with the customers. And, when hiring, make sure that you focus on personal skills that the people have.
2. Improve Your Image
If you’re a new company, chances are that your image is new as well. That means that if there’s anything confusing about it, you can change it without confusing your customers and future customers. You want to also have a logo that will allow people to recognize your products without having to always spell out the entire name. Think about the bigger companies like Walmart or Target. They have easy logos that people see and immediately associate with their names. To create your logo, find a company that offers you a free logo maker and brainstorm with others who are invested in your business about what the best logo for the company would be. Remember that you want it to be simple, easy, and recognizable. You want it to be easy enough that a person could draw it from memory.
3. Make a Financial Plan
One of the main reasons why small businesses go out of business is because they don’t plan for the finances that they will need. Whether you’ve been in business for years now or you’ve just started, rethink your financial plans. Take all of your expenses and rethink the ones that are necessary. This is especially important to do constantly for the first few years that you are open because you’ll start to feel more confident and spend money on things that the business doesn’t need.
4. Hire Quality Managers
When you’re going through a hiring process, ensure that you’re hiring the best that you can get. The managers are the ones who are taking care of the business when you’re away from it. You should be able to trust them just as much as you trust yourself. As you’re interviewing, check up on their past positions and call their references to make sure that you’re getting exactly what they tell you. They should be confident and have experience with managing in their past work history. Remember that you’re looking for more than just a good personality that meshes with your own. You’re looking for someone who is familiar with leadership and confident when making difficult decisions.
Your business will do best when you’re keeping a constant eye on. Of course, you should feel comfortable enough to step back and let it grow on its own, but make sure that things are always heading up.