Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Stepping up

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     Growing a small business means stepping up to the next level. Stepping up can mean stepping out of shoes you have been wearing.

     Nobody is good at everything. Some things are of great interest to you. Others, not so much.

     To step up and grow your business, identify those areas of doing business that least interest you. These are the areas you hire someone else to do the job for you. 

     Example: Javeen runs a health food store. He loves reading about and staying on top of the latest fads, fashions, and developments in healthy foods and nutrition. In the early days, Javeen did everything--ordering, stocking shelves, waiting on customers, keeping the place clean and tidy. As the store grew, Javeen hired an independent cleaning crew, and he hired a person to take care of customers. To grow the operation, Javeen began giving monthly free talks and demonstrations which he promoted on social media. This attracted more attention and brought in more customers. His next step in growing was to hire a person who did all the ordering and interaction with suppliers. Today, Javeen concentrates on the promotional aspects of the operation. 

     Example: Donna is a fiber artist. In the beginning, she created all sorts of things--scarves, hats, quilts, rugs and more. She sold through her own website, attracting customers through social media. She also consigned to gift shops and attended shows. These were the days she thought of as her "getting the business off the ground days." She has now stepped up to her "growing the business" phase, concentrating on specially designed, one-of-a-kind rugs. Today, all of her marketing efforts are centered around designing rugs to a client's specifications as to color, size, and materials. She has hired other fiber artists to make the rugs--under her watchful eye, of course. It is the design and the interaction with clients that interests her today. The time-consuming rug making is left to others she hires. 

     Example: Jon runs a small home improvement business. He can provide and install windows, siding, steps, painting, and take care of other homeowner needs. He has two work crews and has built the business over several years. He has a regular customer base and gets referrals--from satisfied customers as well as through social media and his website. Jon's interest centers around the work to be done, maintaining quality, and basking in customer satisfaction. He never did like the front end--estimating and selling part. So, to grow, he searched until he found a likely candidate to handle selling. It turned out that one of the people on one of his work crews was perfect for the job Jon had in mind. 

     Stepping up to the next level in your business is not to be taken lightly. You cannot handle everything, especially if you are to grow to the next level. 

     Growing a business usually means hiring people. Hire to your weaknesses. Find people who are better than you to do the jobs where you lack experience or interest.