Friday, August 21, 2015

Get outside the box

     Free daily tips, information, advice and ideas
     to help you better manage your small business.

     Opportunities are where you find them. If you're looking in the wrong place, don't expect much.

     Big waves are what surfers are looking for. You watch, you wait, and when you spot the big one, you grab your opportunity. 

     Example: Dwayne operates a health foods store. He stays on top of current trends, the leading edges of interest in healthy foods. He offers organics, non-GMOs, gluten-free foods, and more. He draws customers from a wide area--they travel to his well-stocked store to satisfy their curiosity and interest. Dwayne wanted to grow, and he caught the wave of shipping opportunities available today. Combining this with social media, he now offers many items on his website. He began with dried berries--readily available from suppliers, light weight packaging, long shelf life, and easy to ship. Today, Dwayne ships dried blueberries, cherries, currants, and other dried fruits to customers far and near. And he is looking for his next wave of growth.

     Example: Nick is a dentist. He grew his dental practice by rounding out his offerings with cleanings, dentures, fillings and crowns. His became a well-rounded dental practice. Then Nick spotted a bigger opportunity. He made arrangements with upscale dental clinics, putting together a network of these specialists who could handle dental implants. Then he used a two-pronged approach to attract clients--he uses social media and he places spot ads on localized cable television. When people contact his new dental implant division, he refers them to the specialist closest to them. It is a free service to the new client--Nick is paid by the dental implant specialist who handles the actual work.

     Example: Ted is a computer whiz. He started a business offering to design and set up websites. He quickly expanded, helping business owners use social media, install their networks, and trouble-shoot problems. He suddenly realized that he was doing a lot of free training for his clients. So Ted structured several training programs designed for beginners and light-weights. Today, Ted's training program arm has grown bigger than the rest of his operation. He has also published simple, how-to training manuals available on Amazon's Kindle readers.

     Get outside the box of everyday business to find opportunities. Not every opportunity will be appropriate, but when you spot a wave, go for it. 

     Owners of small businesses tend to settle into daily routines. You get up, face the day's problems, and collapse into bed. Take an hour now and then to relax, let your mind wander, and you might spot one of those waves that can get you outside the box.    

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