If we believe what we read in the media, the world is heading for the worst global economic slowdown since the Great Depression. Fact is, your business will be affected whether you like it or not.
For those who do not believe this, you might end up doing NOTHING and that can be dangerous. On the other hand, for those who believe it, you might just panic and react in different ways: Pressurizing sales staff to bring in more sales, trying to work longer hours, reducing your marketing expenses, or expand new product lines and hence confusing the focus of your business.
Question is: Are these the smartest ways to deal with the impending economic slowdown?
What we suggest that you should do is to start by re-examining your business model and exploring alternatives. When the market change, the business must change, otherwise the chance of surviving this economic storm is going to be minimal, let alone beat the competitors.
But change can be DIFFICULT, if you depend on internal initiatives. Drawing only on your internal resources and experts is unlikely to help your organization, especially so if they have been working in the same environment year in year out, blinded by industry norms. You just can’t see things from the inside. Great ideas always come from the fringe or even outside your industry.
Every crisis has its opportunity and this could actually be a great time for your business to surge ahead of your competitors. Do you see the opportunities, and are actively taking advantage of it? Or do you only see the threats?
You need a clear, systematic way of how you can beat the natural human tendencies to look ‘inwards’ and then putting in place smarter strategies which will ensure that your business will not only survive, but will thrive regardless of the economic climate.
THere are many areas you need to look at but lets just take one area and talk that through with you: SALES.
Whatever the approach might be…Sales is the Key!
Sales is the key to all business success. Ask yourself what does it takes for you to get a new customer? How much does your customer buys from you and why is he not buying more and more often? As part of your review strategy, you need to have clear specific answers to the following questions:
? What is your current cost per sales and do you realise that it will go up further?
? Is the competition biting into your market? Are your competitors coming out with similar or even snazzier products/services to take away your customers?
? How fast or easy is it for you to fill your business with new potential customers? How good are you in getting them to buy?
? How much business are you getting from your current customers? Are they buying from your competitors as well? If so, why?
? Are you overly dependent on some customers? Are they squeezing you for price and payment terms?
? Are you managing the relationship pro-actively and advising/updating customers on other products and services that you are also offering?
? Are your sales affected by an underperforming sales work force and you are not getting the results you want?
Your answers to the questions above will probably make you realise that there are opportunities to build a stronger and more successful business. It is just that nobody is asking you these questions at this moment. And we are only asking questions on your sales area, and have not touched production, supply chain management, financials or your marketing area.
This is your business, you control it: Make sure you do. Taking a second look at your business is critical and has to be done NOW before it is too late.