You’ve been in business for the last two or three years and have navigated the pitfalls, ups and downs associated with the early years of trading. So do you look to keep things the same and carry on nice and safe, or do you look for an ambitious growth strategy to drive your business along?
In 2020 things changed for UK businesses, big time. The 'new normal' has meant that business owners have had to adapt quickly to change. Businesses that have embraced new ways of working, new products and new services in a post-COVID-19 world are most likely to succeed and prosper.
Nothing stays the same in business. In fact, if you do adopt the attitude of ‘business as usual’ you may find that your competitors creep up on you and start biting your ankles.
There is a fantastic book about this principle, and it’s a quick read. From what I recall it’s a thirty-minute read, ideal for your next train journey or midnight read.
It’s called ‘Who moved my Cheese?’ and talks about the principle of a maze. You, the business owner (the mouse) who knows that the cheese is in a particular part of the maze and you know the exact route to find the cheese each day. No problem.
But one day the cheese moves, unexpectedly and is now in a different part of the maze. An unchartered part of the maze, an area you’ve never been before.
It talks about the principle of exploring your market, navigating new areas and identifying ‘new cheese’ sources. It’s not rocket science in any form, but it is a good reminder that we all need to explore new markets, new products and new ’stuff’ to keep the risk low, the competition at bay and your bottom line profitable and secure for the future.
Look to be bold
Embrace change and look to diversify – possibly out of your comfort zone. Look to grow a new product or service or maybe freshen up your existing brand look and feel.
If you’ve never actually invested in your business, it may be a good time to consider a cash injection to help with marketing and development costs.
How to improve
I remember talking to a CEO at a large business. She defined objective feedback from her staff of whom were over 300 strong. Apart from many ethical business responses which she always considered, two things that made her ears prick up. “How to make more money and how to save more money”. It’s that simple, she said. Making more money may well be more services or products, larger audiences etc. or it could well be staff training to increase conversions in sales. As a small business, you can use the same ethos to drive your business. Keep it simple.
Growing your small business doesn’t have to be a challenge. With the right financial backing from products such as business cash advances or other forms of investment, you can drive your business forward.