Running a business is never easy. Many budding new entrepreneurs seem to think that there is a foolproof guide available for anyone starting a new business, whereas in reality much of a startup’s success is commonly based on factors independent of that business sector. What you will find, however, is that there are certain issues that face businesses and offices across the board, whether you are running a bakery company or a consulting firm. It is wise to be clued up on these types of issues before you dive headfirst into your business plan. Otherwise, you could be setting yourself up to fail. The phrase ‘start as you mean to go on’ comes to mind – there’s no point at all setting off on the wrong foot if it could come back to bite you later on. In some ways, it is only natural that there does seem to be a sense of urgency when it comes to business. More of us than ever before are aware of the changing economic climate and the dangers it can bring about for small to medium enterprises. Therefore, many startups these days only plan short-term, rather than long-term goals. But by doing this, and thus not finding a way to rectify the common business problems that could easily hit you, you could be at risk of running your business into the ground. Here are just some of the most common issues that hit companies across the world today, and how you can ensure that you stay in the clear.
You haven’t found the right staff
Hiring staff for the first time is a daunting experience for any young business owner. You may feel as though you have only just found your own feet within a business, and now you are having to bring more people on board and be in charge of them too. The truth is, no business can expect to achieve success without a team of multiple people behind it. Although you might be reluctant to let other people in on an idea you have grown from nothing, it is the only way you can hope to expand your company. Knowing who to hire when you have never done it before, however, can be a tricky one. On paper, you could look at a person’s resume and see that they tick all the boxes. But face to face, you may find that they are difficult to work with and don’t pull their weight in the office. Make sure you have a thorough interview process and even consider holding trial work days so you can see what people are like in action.
Your business isn’t using the right technology
Any business that isn’t full on board with technology, unfortunately, isn’t going to achieve much success in 2017. There are plenty of different types of technology that can aid you with the running of your company, whether you find that you need to increase productivity or protect your data more securely. Not being up to date regarding tech is a common issue many businesses face, and is why you should enlist the help of it services which will be able to recommend the right system for you. A secure VPN is the basis for any private company, as otherwise, anyone can access your important data and/or see staff emails. A good email and messenger provider is also a must to increase the efficiency of communication between employees, and you could also benefit from the use of some kind of storage portal, such as the Cloud. Finally, the actual desktop computers you use need to be capable of all the things you ask of them. If you are still using a model that first came out in the late 90’s, you really need to re-assess the situation! There’s no rule that says you need to go for a Mac over a Windows PC, just speak to your staff about what they would feel more comfortable with.
Cash handling and cash flow
Even if you’ve got a natural head for numbers, it is pretty unlikely that you are going to be able to keep tabs on every single financial aspect of your business. With every deal you make and every client you do business with, the finances of your company get more and more complex. That’s before we’ve even started on tax or VAT too. Before long you will find that you simply can’t keep up, and you panic as you watch your company’s figures get increasingly out of hand before your very eyes. You might think that there’s not much left to do in this scenario, but you will be pleased to know that you can, in fact, rectify the situation. How? By hiring an accountant. Realistically you are going to have way too much on your plate to keep on top of the company finances at all times, so pass the buck to someone else by hiring a professional.
Your business might be the best thing since sliced bread. But if you’re not marketing it correctly, you are going to facing a deep and dark spiral into administration. In an increasingly hectic business arena, the old failsafe marketing techniques of 20 years ago simply won’t do anymore. You should instead be pulling together a highly advanced creative team and thinking of cool and innovative ways to sell your brand to your target audience. Remember that you have many different tools at your disposal: different types of advertising, social media, videography… even throwing live events. Clever marketing is all about doing something to stand out from the crowd, so take your time with pulling something really special together. It may take longer, but a smart and well thought-out marketing campaign will have a much better effect than something basic and rushed.