Five tips to get your ailing business back on track

Posted by on June 24, 2008 in Business Start Up Advice [ 0 Comments ]

When you started your business, you likely had a plan. I am a fan of the one found here on Resource Nation.

You were eager, enthusiastic, and couldn’t wait to change the world! The business owners you met were as eager, enthusiastic and inspired as you were. You were thinking “business ownership must be amazing! Why didn’t I do this sooner?”

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As time went on, you put your plan in a drawer (or another similar place that you don’t reference often enough) and continued running your business. You knew what you wanted and where you wanted to go – you had your plan in mind, and were plugging right along.

Things went along fine. The business was functioning, money was coming in and work was getting done. Over time, you were so busy running your business that your wants, dreams and desires went on the back burner (I mean, seriously – how would you have time for yourself and to run your business?).

But that was ok, because the small business owners met were as tired, overwhelmed and disillusioned as you were. You were thinking “business ownership isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Why did I do this?”

Sound familiar? Are you nodding along as you read, identifying fully with this scenario?

I am amazed at how many business owners know things aren’t working – they know it in their head, or maybe in their gut – but they don’t do anything about it. The result? Poor team morale, low productivity, unsatisfied customers. Not to mention the affect on the business owner, which can range from poor physical health to personal relationships that are deteriorating.

Here’s the Million Dollar Question – what are you doing about it? Here are some tips:

  1. Go back to your plan. Remind yourself of the passion you once had. Find that old feeling that got stuffed in the drawer with the plan.
  2. Write a new plan. What parts of the original plan are still working, and what parts need to be shifted? No, I don’t mean what parts should be changed to justify your current business situation.
  3. Identify where things went off track. Be honest – you know where it happened. You felt it in your gut, but passed that feeling off as too much coffee.
  4. List the things in your business that aren’t working. It’s okay to admit your baby isn’t as cute as you think. If you don’t acknowledge the areas that aren’t working, you can’t fix them.
  5. Find support. A mastermind group, a trusted colleague, even better would be a business coach. It should be somebody who will hold you to task and support you through the changes you know you need to make. Even the best business owners/mentors/athletes have their own coaches. How do you think they stay at the top of their game?

Don’t bury your head in the sand. Don’t be afraid of the tough questions, of seeing your business for what it is, of having the difficult conversations and doing the hard work.

Get real – get to it. I know there is nothing you can’t do. Remember, you started a business and you loved it. You can again.

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