As a business owner, we face the same issues our clients face, right? We have to create a plan that will help us grow our own business. That’s always the challenge for the business owner. Finding time to service the work brought in and still find time to market to a new customer for a new opportunity. I wanted to share with you some ‘blind spots’ I’ve experienced over the years and see if any of them ring true for you and challenge you to take off your blinders if any of these hit close to home.
Here are 5 blind spots that you may be facing as you focus on growing your own business.
- Not recognizing that your customer’s perception is their reality.
When you find the opportunity to connect with a business owner, spend the majority of your time with them listening to their issues. As much as you’d like to tell them what you offer (I have this incredible program called the Stages of Growth X-Ray!) you’ll get much further by listening to what they are struggling with and meeting them there, in their reality, versus where you’d like them to go.
- A new market entrant you didn’t see coming or just didn’t know about.
Many of you are familiar now with Gazelles, EOS, Peer-to-Peer advisory groups – and a variety of competitors to the 7 Stages of Growth. Some may have caught you off-guard or you may suddenly see your home territory inundated with these new entrants. Don’t panic. The best defense to competitors is a great offense. Know what your competitors talk about and uncover the hidden agents (I use that term on purpose) that you have in your toolkit that you know can address issues differently, based on that CEOs stage of growth, quicker, because our program gets to the root cause of issues in two days, not two months and more effectively, because we can also predict what is coming and get CEOs prepared for growth.
- Operating without a well thought out plan.
It’s so much easier to just move forward. To take the time and create a plan of action can seem like a waste of time – “I just need to get out there and sell!” By stepping back and forcing yourself to actually write down your opportunities, to become extremely proficient with your product or service, to project annual sales and expenses so you have a way of determining when things are working and when they aren’t working are critical steps in growing a business. There are no short cuts to success. What is your vision for your company? How do you solve business owner’s problems? What is your formula for growth? When you can approach a CEO with a well thought out plan on how to help them grow their organization, when that CEO sees that you have a proven formula for success, they will listen.
- Thinking you can go it alone.
You provide coaching or consultant services to your clients. Who do you turn to for help? Can’t afford it? Too busy? Not sure who to trust? In our GCS community are hundreds of experts on all types of topics relating to growing a business. By participating in refresher training sessions, marketing mastermind groups, free webinars – you have the ability to get to know others who share the exact challenges you face as a small business owner. Help is available. Your challenge is to recognize when you need it.
- Not paying attention to the financial side of your business.
How do you know you are pricing your services correctly? How much gross profit margin do you need to make a profit that will help you grow your business? What are you doing every day to ‘follow the money’? Are you aware of profit-depleting activities that take you away from profit-building activities? Are you projecting your revenues and expenses annually and creating stretch goals that push you to create new products/services, expand into new markets, identify technology that can be a game changer for your business?
We are all small business owners and we all face challenges every day in sustaining a successful business. What blind spots have you encountered on your journey to build a business you are proud of? Would love to hear from you!
Your success. My passion.
Laurie Taylor, FlashPoint!