3 Areas of Business Where You Should Get Back to Basics Today
If you’re like most busy entrepreneurs around the globe, you spend quite a bit of time each year looking at ways to improve your venture, whether that’s through making use of the latest technologies and processes to run your organization more effectively, or looking for ways to cut costs.
However, while this is time well spent, it also pays to, at least annually, stop and take stock of where things are in your business and what your skill and knowledge level is like in various areas. The start of the year works well as you plan for the months ahead.
You may very well find that some of the tried-and-true business concepts that you thought about when you first started your venture have been forgotten, or that you’re about to launch a startup without fully understanding many basic but essential aspects of doing business. If that’s the case, it’s really time to get back to basics for a while. If you’re keen to start 2017 off well, keep in mind that there are a number of key areas of business that you need to be doing right before you start getting into new projects.
To build a successful business, it certainly pays to enroll in one of the best online MBA courses around to really delve into each of these subjects and improve your skills substantially. You can then take this knowledge and apply it directly to your organization. For now, read on for the rundown of the first topics you should take a look at and how they can improve your business.
A main area of business basics that entrepreneurs should concentrate on if they want to build a new business or recharge a struggling one is leadership. After all, the success of an organization really does come down to the know-how and management of the leaders who run it. No business can thrive if the heads of the venture aren’t steering things in the right direction, and if employees are unmotivated, unproductive, and wishing they were someplace else.
If you want to see different results, you must lead by example and create a positive workplace. Take a look at your business and see if the culture with the organization focuses on teamwork, commitment, positivity, passion, and purpose.
It helps for a variety of leadership styles to be used so that different personalities are worked with accordingly; plus you should make sure that workers are regularly acknowledged for their efforts and results, and rewarded at least occasionally too.
It is also important for employees to feel supported, listened to (particularly when it comes to their suggestions, feedback, opinions, and requests), trusted to do their job, and that they have growth potential within the company. Try to ensure too that workers aren’t continually stressed out by too many tasks or unrealistic goals; and implement training and development programs for staff members so that they continue to learn and be intellectually challenged.
Of course, another one of the most basic things in business that you need to get right if you want your venture to survive and thrive is finance. Unfortunately though, many people get too caught up in the day-to-day operations of their venture and don’t spend nearly enough time concentrating on the cashflow of their business and other financial matters. This can lead to lots of different problems over time, including unexpected or added costs, lost revenue, an inability to get a loan, fines, and more.
If you need to get your head wrapped about financial matters better, consider studying, at the very least, a basic accounting course at a local training center or university. If possible though, you should think about enrolling in a more intensive program where you can really get a thorough understanding of micro and macro economic factors and all the ins and outs involved in accounting, investment, lending, and the like.
At a minimum, it is important for you to be able to read basic accounting numbers and reports, such as balance sheets, profit and loss statements, tax returns, profit margins, and forecasts. You need to also keep a very close eye on your venture’s cashflow, so that you can always pay your bills and staff wages on time. After all, a lack of cash is one of the most common reasons why many businesses close within the first five years of being launched.
Lastly, another one of the basics that you should never ignore is customer service. Customers are the lifeblood of a business, and not only bring in direct revenue to a venture but can also refer new clients and increase sales that way too.
While you might utilize handy customer service-related apps and other tech around these days to automate some customer service functions, it is worth remembering that personal, direct interactions are important too.
Speaking with clients over the phone and in person can help you to develop more in-depth relationships with them, as well as to get invaluable feedback on your products, services, price points, the selection you offer, your customer support, and much more. Direct conversations are also great for learning more about your target market and helping you to discover problems sooner rather than later, before they become huge.