To effectively run a small business, there are a number of tasks you have to do that are not only necessary, but oftentimes tough to swallow.
Sometimes a small business has to let staff go in order to stay financially afloat. Other businesses cut their advertising and marketing budgets, and then take the chance of missing out on new clients. Still others close their doors altogether because they were not organized enough in the first place.
If any of this sounds scary, it should. Running a small business comes with many challenges, but they can certainly be overcome with smart leadership and a determination to learn from past mistakes.
With that in mind, ask yourself if your small business is truly organized. And if it isn’t, let’s find out how can you better organize it for this year and beyond.
Review Your Office Procedures
The start of the new year is a great time to determine what is working and what is failing. Ask yourself the following:
- Is my revenue stream increasing, staying stagnant, or even decreasing?
- How motivated are my employees when they arrive at the office each day, and ultimately when they leave at day’s end?
- Do work conditions allow my employees to get their jobs done each day? These can include a whole host of items such as having the right technology, having room for growth and prosperity within the company, not being micromanaged, providing a comfortable work environment, and more.
- Are consumers truly hearing my brand’s message or do I need to do more with advertising, marketing, and social media?
When you assess these areas, some will be easy to address; others will prove more challenging. When it comes to your company’s revenue stream, multiple factors go into determining how strong or weak it is. In fact, some of the items addressed earlier have a notable impact on it, specifically your employees.
If your workers are unmotivated and not enjoying their working conditions, do you really think your business will prosper?
Change What Isn’t Working
Sure, you can replace bodies and put new faces and voices in front of customers, but high employee turnover leads to customer’s asking questions and sometimes feeling uneasy doing business with you.
So, how can you best motivate your employees to do the best they possibly can? Among the ways:
- Good salaries and benefits–It sounds like a no-brainer, but too many small businesses will try and pay their employees as low a wage as possible. Yes, many companies are restricted from paying better wages due to challenges they face from the government in running their businesses at a profit (higher taxes and regulations, increasing healthcare costs, etc.), but find a way to pay your best.
- Don’t be a babysitter–If you hire workers to do a job, sit back and let them do it. Yes, proper training is essential to making a good employee, but don’t restrict your staff from learning and even making mistakes here and there. The time you spend micromanaging can be better spent searching for ways to grow your company and increase the revenue stream.
- Work shouldn’t be painful–Simple things like having a positive working environment go a long way in acquiring and keeping productive workers. From having the best technology to the right desk organizer, review whether your employees have the proper tools to do their jobs. You might be surprised to learn that you’ve been short-changing them on some items that are essential to producing results. The better prepared your employees are, the better chance they have of gaining and keeping new customers.
- Use your employees as brand ambassadors–When it comes right down to it, your employees and some of your customers are your best brand advocates. If you’ve limited or banned workers from using social media on-the-job, rethink that decision. When used in a positive manner, employees talking about your brand on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other sites is essentially free advertising and marketing. Also encourage customers to spread your company’s message through word-of-mouth, referrals, etc. Much of this can be done on their respective social sites.
Running a small business in today’s America comes with challenges, and sometimes frustration. Make sure you and your workers are as organized as possible, letting everyone shine at what they’re tasked to do.