Admit it, you have dreamed that your business earns at least a million dollars a year. You see yourself providing jobs for your community and leaving a legacy. But, it is just not happening, right.
Often the problem is not the dream but the questions we don’t ask that keep us from achieving our goals. For example, let’s say earning a million dollars a year is your aim. What questions would you need the answers for this to become a reality? How about, “How many additional hours do I need to work to earn a million dollars a year”?
That is a good question; however not the only one that needs to be answered But, it’s a good start. How would you respond? Before you go too far down this road, ponder this – to determine how many more hours, need to be worked; you should have an idea of the number of hours already worked.
Seems simple, doesn’t it? This is a common problem among entrepreneurs seeking business success. They are so focused on what they want to achieve they forget to assess their present state. At times, they are stuck when identifying what their next steps should be. To make more money, you need to get unstuck. Get clear. Ask the right questions.
Consider this; if you used your phone to get directions to the local mall, wouldn’t the app start with your location? Getting unstuck requires similar information. You need to know:
- Where your business stands today? Do you know numbers? Look at your profit and loss statement, receivables, payables, overhead costs (including payroll for yourself and your staff). Do you know what your business netted last year?
- What would need to change to increase the net by 5% or 10% in your next fiscal year? Would you need to increase your prices, develop new products, decrease your overhead? Or would it be better to add new customers, spend more on advertising; what about marketing online?
- Ask the Stop, Start, Continue Questions. What do we need to stop, start, and/or continue doing to increase our market share? If a process or practice is not working, STOP IT. If it is working CONTINUE.
- Meet with your staff. Ask for their input. Make revenue enhancement a team effort. Quite often the team will come up with what you need to START to improve your bottom line.
- Get help from SCORE. Formally known as the Service Corp of Retired Executives. SCORE is a business mentoring service for entrepreneurs as well as a resource partner with the Small Business Administration and a great place for information/ideas on growing your business . Click the link to go directly to their website. https://www.score.org/
- Be realistic. If your net profit for 2016 was $100,000.00, it might be unrealistic to expect a revenue jump to a million this year. It can happen but do not set yourself up for failure by having expectations your market cannot support.
- Know your market. As stated above, what can you expect in terms of growth from your market? Are there people making the kind of money you envision from your product or service? Ask them how they did it. Should you narrow your focus? Spend advertising and marketing dollars where they can give you a larger return. Carve out a niche in the market, where you can expand and gain more customers while keeping your spending budget the same just more targeted.
- Be Patient. Numbers do not lie. If the niche can support the kind of growth, you envision it will happen.
Getting stuck occurs in business and your everyday life. These getting unstuck tips can work in any area. Commit to knowing yourself, what needs to stop, start or continue in your life situations, be willing to get help when needed, and be realistic and patient with YOURSELF.
Success is possible when you are willing to put into action the simple motto,“to thine own self be true”. Your business deserves the same consideration.
Gwen Hill is an author, speaker and seminar leader helping people to create businesses and design an inviting work culture that attracts more clients and builds more productive teams that you ever thought possible.