One of the common challenges entrepreneurs face is dealing with the inevitable uncertainties of business…….will the contract be signed, will I be able to pay the bills, will I attract enough clients?
There may still be difficult times ahead for many small business owners with cuts in public spending and slow growth across industry sectors. It is inevitable that everyone will be touched to some extent by the Government’s ‘austerity’ measures.
Some people naturally rise to the challenge but others, probably the majority of us, even when the economy is in full swing, will have anxiety about managing their way through an uncertain future
So what is the secret to surviving and thriving when purse strings are being tightened, competition is high and economic growth is slow?
1. Use any down time in your business to reconnect or extend your network. This can be a great opportunity to form and establish relationships that could be of mutual benefit now or in the future.
2. Look at ways to add extra value to your existing clients. It is easy to lose sight of who you work with now in the pursuit of new clients. Your existing clients are often your best source of repeat work or valuable referrals. Spend time really getting to know what they value about working with you and find out how you could improve or extend your services. What would it take for your clients to be thrilled, delighted and surprised by what you offer? Have fun with this!
3. Do your own simple market research and find out if your products and services need updating to reflect changing client needs. Any business, large or small, has to stay ahead of the curve whatever the economic conditions. Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback by using surveys, face to face meetings or by arranging a small gathering of your target audience. Really get to understand the challenges and problems they face and the solutions they are seeking.
4. Be creative in your approach. You don’t have to copy or follow others in your field. Why not take a few risks and stand out from the crowd. Big names like Apple have been born out of previous turbulent times. Know that opportunities always exist whatever the economic conditions.
Remember you are 100% responsible for the results in your business whatever the circumstances. Make the decision today to do whatever it takes to navigate your way through uncertain times by taking consistent action with confidence and courage. BOLA TANGKAS