Friday, August 12, 2022

10 proven steps to a stronger business foundation

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Shreya Christina
Shreya has been with for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

Cindy is the COO of Beauty Bar Medispa.

According to statistics published in 2019 by the Small Business Administration (SBA), about 20% of business startups fail in the first year. About half succumb to bankruptcy within five years. In the 10th year, only about 33% survive.

That’s quite an alarming statistic. For those starting a new business, buying an existing business, or re-evaluating their current business, building a strong foundation is essential to achieving success. Without a strong foundation, your business is more likely to end up in chaos. Anything built on rock has a much better chance of thriving than if it were built on sand.

With over 20 years of experience as a senior executive in a variety of companies, I understand the importance of a strong foundation upon which all future business endeavors are built. In my current career, I was faced with the challenge of working with an existing business that was being sold to a new owner, which involved working with both an existing business plan and a new business plan. Within two years, our growth tripled. This article discusses ten key elements that have proven to be not only necessary, but also critical to success.

1. Execute an effective business plan, knowing that you more than likely need to factor in customizations. Focus more on listening than on what you already know or what you’ve done in the past. Your previous experience and knowledge will come into play after you have listened, learned and evaluated.

2. Build a customer-centric content strategy. Knowing and understanding your customer base will help you know where to focus your efforts. This can be in the form of the following.

• Employee feedback. This gives you a broader perspective to understand your customer as your employees are more than likely aware of customer satisfaction issues at different levels such as payment, product development, service, etc.

• Market research surveys. With these surveys you gain insight into the wishes and needs of your potential customer.

• Customer surveys. Customer surveys will help you know what your customers are looking for, especially when creating content, and will make it clear to you that your wishes and needs may not be their wishes and needs.

3. Create a user-friendly website. Create a website that is easy to navigate and has clear and concise information along with photos and video.

4. Build SEO. Build your search engine optimization and review it quarterly.

• Find the right keywords.

• Focus on your unique offering.

• Don’t overload your site with keywords.

• Build links to your site.

• Publish high quality content.

5. Optimize your social media. Focus on high-impact activities related to your social media marketing.

• Know your audience.

• Prioritize quality over quantity.

• Be consistent.

• Use eye-catching images and videos, roles, etc.

• Create shareable content and conversation posts that elicit responses.

6. Consider community. Include your community in your business plan, such as a return program to a local charity, as well as community involvement.

7. Use employee satisfaction surveys. This is a non-negotiable step when building your foundation. In most cases, your employees have the most direct impact on your customers. Get employee feedback on company culture and discover which values ​​are most important to them. Ask them what areas of your company need improvement and ask them what they think are the company’s strengths. Include this information when creating a solid business plan.

8. Give workers exposure. Offer your employees access to all departments within your company. Make sure that all employees have walked in the shoes of other colleagues for a day. By doing so, they gain a greater understanding and appreciation of the way the company works, promoting collaboration and unity.

In some cases, you may want to consider cross-training. My belief and experience in cross training is that it is essential to run a business efficiently. However, you should proceed with caution, as some employees feel that it is just extra work being piled on them or that there is a threat of their position being taken.

9. Put people in the right roles. Transfer employees to roles that suit them better. An employee can be hired for one role, but later you find out that his or her strength lies in another department. I call this ‘finding their shine’. When you can move an employee into a role that better suits their personality and abilities, they will shine!

This creates a positive ripple effect within your organization. Repositioning an employee in a role that suits them better creates a company culture that truly cares about the happiness of its employees while increasing productivity and employee retention.

10. Develop your pricing based on your value. Most of us doubt our prices and wonder if we’ve priced too high or too low. Once you’ve done your market research, you can confidently talk about your prices with your customers and your employees. Many people are willing to pay more if they can see the value. Very rarely does a customer want to pay less in order to receive less. By properly managing customer expectations, the referral business will soon follow!

Similar to the foundation of a house that must be strong to support the structure, the same is true for business. Always start with a solid foundation to ensure the future stability of your business. Business Council is the leading growth and networking organization for entrepreneurs and leaders. Am I eligible?

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