19 August 2013

Five tips for efficient business growth

Many business owners are too busy concentrating on getting through the day to start thinking about their long-term strategy, so we've put together some easy-to-implement top tips to help get you focused.

Making plans for business growth and focusing on becoming more efficient is vital for start-ups and small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs). But many business owners are too busy concentrating on getting through each day to start thinking about long-term strategy.

Here are our top tips for reducing waste and growing efficiently:

1.      Concentrate on your best-paying customers

Profitable business must take priority if you are going to be successful. Look at which clients and which areas of your business bring in the most profits and make sure you give them the most attention and energy. However, this may mean you have to have to have a difficult conversation with existing clients who are paying less for your products and services than other customers. If a client is not proving lucrative, don’t stick with them out of pure loyalty. Explain that you need to put your prices up and if they don’t agree to pay more, accept that they will have to go elsewhere.

2.      Get out the pen and paper

Writing things down on paper may seem old-fashioned nowadays, but getting out a large pad of paper and a pen is a really effective way of focusing your mind and brainstorming to come up with an effective strategy and business plan.

3.      Work out what will attract customers

Ask yourself what your company’s unique selling points are and what you need to change to become more appealing to customers. Making a list of the main things clients value in the market you operate in can help you decide what things you need to improve. If customers want to pay less, look at ways to cut costs so you can bring your price down. If their priority is good service, work out what you need to do to improve what you are offering.

4.      Talk to your staff

If your company has employees, gather them together in the office and invite their suggestions on how things can be improved and the amount of waste reduced. Those helping run your business on the ground will often see things you don’t – and they may have some innovative and creative ideas on how to make things better.

5.      Embrace innovation

One good way of driving business growth is to constantly look at new ways of moving forward. A revamped business IT system or a new way of working might make your company more efficient. Thinking creatively may also lead to new product lines or services which bring in more customers and boost profits. The world is constantly changing so don’t stand still and carry on doing things a certain way just because that is what you have always done. Something which worked in the past may not work as well now so you need to constantly assess the way your business operates and what needs to change.