Putting the Bricks Back Together: Reviving an Ailing Business
The toughest thing about doing business is that we can end up throwing the kitchen sink at our company in the hopes that it will thrive. When you start to embrace practices like outsourcing or are cutting corners in any way, the fact is that a business can struggle, no matter what you do to bring it out of the water. It can be risky and incredibly scary, but how do we understand the best approaches to fixing our failures?
Our business benefits from stress tests on a regular basis. Lots of companies don’t attempt to think about the worst-case scenarios and those businesses that have struggled have undoubtedly not spent enough time putting their businesses into hypothetical worst-case scenarios. One of the most common reasons a business can fail is that it has been hijacked. Theft in the form of a data breach can hold a business to ransom and can result in money being stolen, but also the company being fined for not doing enough. This is why pen testing, also known as penetration testing, is one way to test the efficacy of your IT infrastructure. Understanding that your business needs to stress test on a regular basis can give you a far better understanding of the problems that need prioritising.
Managing Cash Flow
It is amazing how many companies seldom have the ability to manage their cash flow effectively. In many ways, the rules are simple: you need to ensure you are spending less than what you are making. Having an accountant is something that can make a massive difference to the overall efficacy of managing your finances. When you realise that the vast majority of small businesses fail because of problems with their cash flow, this should make you sit up and pay attention. Managing cash flow also consists of streamlining the invoicing process. Ensuring that you follow up with customers that haven’t paid will ensure that cash flow is a far more efficient entity.
Target Your Target Market
Marketing is something that many small businesses believe is almost like catching fish with dynamite; the bigger the explosion, the more fish you will catch. The problem is that you’re not catching the right type of fish. Businesses that fail spend more time throwing a large net out, which takes a lot more effort. Instead, going to the right areas where your ideal customers are will give you far more focus so you can identify the pain points of your customers, their buying habits, and, therefore, develop a better strategy.
There are many ways to reduce business costs, such as cutting unnecessary expenses and your utilities, but you also need to understand that while it is tempting to reduce the cost of the products, the overall cost is pivotal to ensuring that your business doesn’t undersell itself.
Business failures are numerous, and the sooner we learn how to fix our business failures, the better we are going to deal with problems that come our way, but also be a far more efficient and effective company as a result.