Mistakes are bound to happen in your venture but others can lead to your business folding. Make sure these mistakes aren’t turning into habits that will sabotage your business
Businesses are about trials and errors. Some ideas turn into hits while others need a shift in another direction. So many business people share with me that there are risks involved in being a businessperson, but we all know that the financial and personal rewards are worthwhile. I remember working for a small company that I thought had so much potential to grow. I was excited to finally step into their doorstep. But over the months I, with almost every staff member lost interest in helping the business grow. I wasn’t happy as I didn’t feel challenged or felt like my ideas mattered. Worse our boss was a nightmare. Although it meant losing a job, I kind of didn’t care at all how the business performed, as long as I earned my salary. As much as not all of us are born to be boss chicks, I feel we, employees can add valuable advice from the other side of the chair. This is a conversation I would have had with my previous boss but I would rather share my tips with you from what I had observed in my previous job. You hustlers worked hard to take your brand to where it is today so make sure you avoid killing your business with the following habits:
- Not keeping up with the changing needs of your customers: The survival of any business depends on whether you are able to meet the demands of your customers. Always stay ahead of new trends in your line of business and see how you can incorporate these with what you are your currently offering. Know what your competitors are offering and especially what your customers really need.
- Mistaking money in your bank as profit: Like your customers, cash flow is king to your business. Make sure you know each financial transaction in your business and whether you are really making profits. Develop the habit of paying yourself a salary each month, like everyone else you pay and invest the rest back to your business.
- Not taking good care of your employees: This cannot be stressed enough. Although you can’t control the work ethic and loyalty of your staff, you can, however, create a favourable work environment that ensures their career growth and satisfaction. Having a small business means you might not afford to pay a huge salary but create great incentives that will keep employees happy. There are many ways of doing this, I, for example, would have appreciated either a training programme in a different department that I could have challenged myself with, recognition or even gift vouchers, lunches and, believe it or not, my ex-boss saying thank you. The magic formula to this is: happy employees= happy businesses
- Failing to attend to customer dissatisfaction: It’s called word of mouth. With the power of social media, the voices of customers spread like wild fire these days. Ensure that what they say is good and if it’s not attend to their concerns. Don’t underestimate your customers by taking forever to answer calls, not addressing their needs on time and not meeting their expectations.
What bad business habits have you improved on?