As more and more people decide to leave the 9 to 5 and embark on their own small business venture, the competition is growing exponentially.
Along with this, as a business owner, you’re constantly on the lookout for new ways to stand above the competition and gain an edge.
There are many ways you can differentiate your business and draw out your value proposition.
The main objective is to make sure your business has a competitive edge and doesn’t only float around in the ether. That way you keep your small business making progress, reaching its goals, and growing bigger. Here are five powerful ways to make sure your business has a competitive edge.
1. Go The Extra Mile
As technology advances and your target market’s attention span shortens, you want to make sure you stand out in their memory as best as possible. It isn’t enough to just make a good initial impression and only perform what is promised. It always looks good on a business when it goes the extra mile.
This way you win favor with your audience, build goodwill and a strong word of mouth network. It’s important to remember that, while people do talk about bad business experiences, they also like to gush about outstanding ones too.
2. Hone In On Your Management Skills
If your business is being poorly managed, it will show in everything you do. Sharpening your management skills and making sure you are listening to not only your customers, but your employees is key to keeping your business thriving above the rest.
Being a good manager can take some self-awareness, as you examine and try to look for key parts of your management skill set that you can improve. Remember to always keep communication at the forefront. Without it, you are likely to have a disorganized group that won’t deliver to the best of their ability.
3. Set a Creative Environment
Creativity is an important differentiating factor in how well your business stands out. A more creative environment can lead to more creative and timely solutions to problems that can move your business forward and can even help you gain more customers in the process. Allowing you and your employees to be creative when thinking of solutions can be a great exercise in mental strength and aptitude, that will make for a sharper team that consistently delivers.
Marcy Fetzer of decision-wise says it best when she states “The secret to meeting goals lies in a manager’s ability to utilize the talents residing in the staff. Nurture those skills by avoiding blind optimism, creating a healthy pace, and encouraging creativity from staff.”
4. Hire Emotionally Intelligent People
This is one that many small businesses fail to consider in their hiring process. Emotionally intelligent people are vital to the success of your small business. And if your business hasn’t gotten big enough to employ people, practice emotional intelligence as the business owner.
In today’s world, it isn’t enough to simply hire someone that has a concrete skill set to get everything done. There will often be crossover situations where they will have to work in teams multiple times.
And this is where emotional intelligence comes in. It is simply a skill set not very many business owners pay enough attention to. Be in the minority that sidesteps this mistake.
5. Create Systems
Creating systems saves you the time wasted in disorganization. Once you have a system in place for daily and sporadic occurrences, your workflow optimizes. With automated systems you can make sure you are hitting your goals on a daily, weekly and ultimately yearly basis as you make it easier to meet deadlines and consistently deliver.
Creating systems saves you from lost time, lost productivity, and potentially lost customers. Creating systems is as straightforward as creating a written hiring process, or a detailed business plan with quarterly goals, and then sticking to it.
Your business needs an edge to help it stand out from the rest as competition grows stronger and there are constant advances to technology that eliminate barriers to entry. These are only a few fundamental ways to give your small business an edge that apply across the board. They can each be molded according to your business goals and needs. Use these strategies for a more fruitful business strategy as you move forward.