Business Growth Focus Formula™
WHY DO SOME BUSINESSES GROW FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH AND OTHERS DON’T?
It is simply because some business owners focus on the right things and some don’t.
Most small business owners chose to do what they like to do, or what they are best at. This is fine to a certain extent. Those who want to have a highly successful business approach it systematically and change focus according to the stage the business is at. Focus doesn’t mean they only work on a certain area of the business or that they do it all by themselves.
So what do you need to do?
You simply need to concentrate your efforts on a particular area of your business at a particular time. It also means that you learn more about that area. Of course, you can involve experts and you can delegate, as long as this area is where your mind is. Even if you outsource, you inevitably acquire more knowledge in that area.
Why is this knowledge so important? Because you want to know enough so you can ensure that people who do the work do the right work. Otherwise, they do what they like and your company doesn’t achieve the set objectives.
FOCUS ON WHAT IS NEEDED IN ORDER TO REACH OBJECTIVES!
So what do you focus on first?
The idea is simple: your Focus, as the owner of the business, moves from ‘Sales’ to ‘Sources and Resources’ to ‘Systems’, as your company grows.
This is the best business growth strategy. Focusing on one part of the business does not mean that you only deal with that part. It means, say, that you allocate half of your time to it, while the other half is split between anything else you would normally deal with.
Above all, you, as the business owner, must focus on what needs your Focus, even if it is not necessarily what you like doing.
Let’s apply the Business Growth Focus Formula™ and talk about each area of your business:
1. Focus on Sales
When you are at the beginning with your business, or when you launch a
new product or open a new location. ‘Sales’ is split into two parts:
(i) selling your product or service;
(ii) selling your idea.
Selling your product or service is what you would generally understand as: giving your product/service to your customer in exchange for money (the price paid).
Selling your idea means getting people to buy into what you are doing. To share your dream, your vision and to get others excited about it. Selling your idea to current employees, potential employees, partners, suppliers, banks and any other person who is necessary to run the business smoothly, is as important as selling your product. You cannot create a business on your own. To achieve your Objectives, you need people around you. And those people don’t join just because you think they should. It is tempting to believe they see and understand as you do, but they don’t. You have to give them reasons to opt in, just as you give reasons to your customers to buy your product.
During this Stage, you have only a Scope. You know where you want to get to, but it is still flexible. You need the market reaction and partners’ Feedback in order to ensure you have the right product, the right offering, both for your customers and for your business partners.
2. Focus on Sources and Resources
Once your product or service sells by itself; in other words, when customers buy your product or service without you having to convince each of them individually. By ‘Sources’ I mean everything that enables you to deliver to your customer; that is, your overall infrastructure: production facility, office space, logistics, as well as your employees and money to buy raw materials and invest in further growth. No point selling if you can’t deliver, right?
When you have gotten to this phase, you have a Strategy in place. Now that you know what and how you sell, and for how much, you can create Specific Objectives and a clear path to achieving them.
3. Focus on System
When you are confident that you have a product that sells and that you can deliver and satisfy your customer. By ‘Systems’, I mean organizational charts, job descriptions, processes, procedures, policies, IT system, and potentially CRM / ERP (software to help with planning and managing your Resources and your customers).
In this phase you consolidate what you have; you organize things internally and clean up your mess. By this Stage, you and your staff have tried various ways of producing and delivering Value and you now know who does what in your company, and how. It is, therefore, time to document everything that is happening in your company, to put order in place. This helps you and your current employees to better understand how things are being done in your company and to become more efficient. Having these Systems in place also makes for an easier and more efficient process when you bring new people into your organization. You have ‘machinery’ that works, effectively and efficiently.
What you care about now is becoming a Superstar Company.
101 Tactics to Achieve Smarter Profits Faster
After Systems are in place, you need to focus on Innovation
Continual innovation is essential if you want to take your company to the next level – in which case you go back to Sales in another growth cycle. Alternatively, you retire or sell your company. Or you leave it as is and continue to manage ‘in the business’, which will eventually go downhill.
This is one of 101 tactics presented in my collection Business Unlimited. If you want to read the entire book, click here.