It’s a new year, a new month, and a new opportunity to take a step back and have a look at your business in a whole new light. So often we get caught up in the day to day; We start out in our business with all these grand plans of how we are going to grow our business, our customer base, how we will manage our staff and with fresh ideas and strategies for massive success. But often we get stuck in the day to day grind and we just run out of time to do all the things we want to do and achieve.
The staff that we work so hard to train sometimes leave, customers aren’t always satisfied, the hours are long, and you just feel like you are on a mouse wheel a lot of the time going around and around in circles, living one day at a time, one shift to the next… Am I right?
Taking a step outside of our business to look at it objectively, to plan and to strategize can do wonders for getting you back on track, helping you grow your business and giving you some fresh perspective. It is an area I harp on about quite a lot, but that’s because it is also an area that I am incredibly passionate about and something I try and do actively for my own business as well.
When we start out we see EVERYTHING with fresh eyes and excitement, but after a while, it becomes normal and familiar. And the day to day grind wasn’t what we expected it would be like. When we start out with think about all of the details; how your shop front or cellar door looks when you walk in, how your website looks for those who search for it, how your product looks and how knowledgeable your customer service staff are. But over time the details can get overlooked when we are just trying to get through the day to day.
It becomes familiar, so we forget to look at things like a customer would. The long and the short of it is that the customer is the one that ultimately fills your seats, buys your product, and fills your pockets.
So we need to always be challenging the status quo and be thinking about our business as a customer would. Not always easy to do as you may find things that you’re not thrilled about, and you may not have the objectivity to look at it from a different angle. I get it!
There is so much to do running a business; serving customers, selling products, training staff, doing accounting, marketing your business and paying bills just to name a few. You wear many hats, multiple times a day, so at times it’s hard to step out and do the work that needs to be done on the business.
Making that time to be more strategic can do wonders, even if it’s just a little bit.
Some ways that you can do this in-house are to have an offsite planning day or afternoon with your management staff, go to a different restaurant, pub, cellar door and see it through a customer's eyes while you plan the year out for your business. Or you can set up a calendar, and schedule one small spot check a week for the next five weeks. For example; One week look at refreshing your website details, one week look at your social media or staff manuals and procedural documents. Often, breaking things down into bite-sized chunks can help get shit done.
Whatever you do, don’t do nothing. Do something, as small changes are better than no changes.
Kate Bickford MD & Owner - BK AGENCY: