No one knows your business as well as you do; one of the questions most often asked by business owners is “how can I increase my bottom line?” The challenge I present is to make a list of 5 ideas that have the best potential of increasing your bottom line. In this exercise there are no limits but the ideas have to be realistic. (No national TV adds at the Super Bowl). Take the time necessary to think about your ideas; this is not a quick fix process.
Prioritizing is one of my favorite things; number them from one to five with number one being the one that you feel has the best chance for success. Now, answer the following questions (in writing) for each of your ideas:
- What has to be done to implement this idea?
- Who will do the work?
- What are the associated costs?
- What are the obstacles?
- After answering the first four questions, what steps need to be taken to set this idea into motion?
- How long will it take to see positive financial results?
- How much time are you willing to allocate to make this idea a reality?
- Who can best help you with this idea?
Review your answers to these questions. This will determine which of these ideas are feasible from a time and financial perspective.
The next step is the action part. Take the one idea that you believe has the best possibility for success. Call your business support group or your coach/business consultant to help you develop a marketing plan with time lines and accountability steps.
The current business operation cannot be neglected; a new direction has to be carefully integrated into the existing daily operation. Implementing a new plan requires focus, some additional resources and most of all a time management program which allows the new plan to be implemented.
Take a day to work “on your business “instead of “in your business”. Profitability is the measure of business success and this exercise will open new doors for your business.
The biggest hindrance that any small business owner faces in growing a business is his procrastination when it comes to the development and implementation of a new idea that requires time and effort.
Nick J. Petra CFP www.strategicduck.com
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