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Understand the Problem before trying to Solve it

The first of the year usually results in a rush to solve all of the problems that were experienced last year. In my experience many of the sought after solutions don’t really address the root cause of the problem. Yes, it may feel good to press on at the start of  the new year, working on solutions to all the problems that prevented last year from becoming the success it should have been.

Before you get so engrossed implementing solutions to problems, step back and look at the problems. Ask yourself what did not work and why it did not work. In other words take an in depth look at the problem.

When things go wrong in a small business the owner has to understand what factors contributed to the failure. A solution cannot be found unless you know what exactly has to be fixed. The problem may have many faces:

  • Marketing mistakes
  • Product/service not meeting the needs of the intended target, may need to be changed
  • Lack of effort on the part of the owner or staff
  • Procrastination on the part of the owner
  • Lack of funding
  • Inadequate staff

This list can change depending upon the individual business situation, but before you can make the proper changes, you have to understand the problem. Make a list of what you did right and what you did wrong last year. In each list analyze what the things were that contributed to the success or failure. This will be your foundation for building 2012.

He who can take no interest in what is small will take false interest in what is great.

John Ruskin

Nick J. Petra  (

Make it a successful today!

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