It is extremely difficult to build a successful business today. No matter the industry your business is in, there is increased competition and always the concern that a new and powerful competitor will enter your industry and dominate or the existing competition will hit their stride and leave you in the dust.
For this reason it is important for small and medium size companies to take a smart approach to operating their business. This means using proven strategies that work consistently over time. Here are a few of the most critical strategies for you to implement at you company to ensure your business grows and remains profitable. .
Outsource to Experts
A natural inclination for most small businesses is to try and develop every aspect of your business in house. Whether it is sales, marketing, human resources, product development, and other key areas of the business. But this strategy is likely not the best one. Instead you should only focus on taking in house those areas of the business that you can execute well. For all other areas of the business you should look to find top quality companies that you can use to outsource those business functions.
For example one important area for many small and medium sized businesses is Information Technology or IT which relates to the computer hardware and software systems that are used in your business and issues relating to the internet like online security.
An IT department in a company will oversee these areas, making sure the company is functioning optimally. However building and managing an effective and efficient IT team that can design and keep up with this lightning fast area of business is very difficult and costly.
The best approach is to outsource this area of the business to a reputable company that has the skills and resources to provide first rate IT services. In other words, if your business is based in London it is best to outsource your IT needs to a company that provides IT support in London.
This strategy will get you lots of benefits including:
- Cost savings on your IT needs as compared to building your own IT department.
- Access to the latest and best IT products tools and strategies.
- Training for your employees on the use and best practices for use of IT tools, services, and Internet security.
- Consistent monitoring of your IT products and services.
The Top IT companies provide you with a range of benefits that you simply cannot get on your own with the budget of a typical SME. The key business area is best handled by outsourcing.
Hire Employees That Treat Your Company Like Their Own
One of the keys to success in any business is in hiring the right employees. Who you hire will determine nearly everything about your business, because they will set the tone for how your business operates. For this reason, you need to be very meticulous about your hiring.
Small and medium-sized businesses always try to balance the quality of an employee, with the amount of money they can spend for that particular employee. They tend to believe that we cannot get excellent employees, only excellent employees that will fit their budgets. As a result, they end up with employees who are not the best fit for the company.
The key however when you are hiring, should be to look for an employee who treats your business like an owner. This means someone who provides the care and concern about the business and the same way that you would.
This person should focus on the big things like making sure that the business opens on time, watching other employees to make sure that they are not slacking off, making sure everyone adheres to company rules and regulations, and making sure that any customer interactions with employees always ends positively.
This person should also focus on the small things like making sure that your business is clean and functional, and that other employees are given positive feedback when they do a good job.. These types of employees make the difference between success and failure, and success and extreme success at a company.
When you are hiring, make sure to interview the person about their reasons why they are working for you. Also ask him about their past experiences. Have you ever been an entrepreneur? Do they understand everything that takes to make a business like you are successful? What are their aspirations? The answer to this last question give you an indication of how much care they will bring to your business. Hiring well can provide you with employees who function as partners.
Constantly Retrain and Reeducate Everyone
As fast as business is moving today, those tools and strategies that your team has mastered today to help you become successful will likely only work a short time. Then you will see your profits and sales decline. The only way to know what is going on outside of your business and what you should be doing inside of your business is to constantly train your employees and yourself.
You should make training an integral part of working at your company and it should be provided as a service to your team. Training should include everyone, at every level, and should be done regularly.
There are several great companies that provide online training in nearly any business topic. Your employees can engage with training doing business hours, after work, and even on weekends, at their leisure. Many of these training courses offer certificates commemorating that your employee has finished that particular course. This acquisition of additional skills can be very valuable to your company, and also provide a way for employees to get promotions and better pay.
When you select training, make sure that the company providing it has the highest quality teachers and the widest variety of courses. The courses should be up-to-date and reflect the current market reality in your industry.
Implement these strategies in your SME and you will find that your success increases.