Thursday, January 14, 2016

Your business core

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

     Businesses have a way of pulling you in various directions. No matter what you operate, you will be tempted to head off down a side road.

     More people are turning to therapy to achieve weight reduction, so should a nutritionist go off in that direction? More people are looking for healthy meals, so should you turn your cafe into only farm fresh, vegetarian meals? 

     You created your business using your dream. That dream is your core. Messing with it can destroy your business. Be careful.

     Example: Jennie opened a bakery. She was inspired by the looks of kids when they sampled her brownies. Her baking passion caused her to expand into high-end, high priced cakes. It was a good move. The business thrived because she took advantage of a market that was ripe for the taking. But she missed the children's faces. She kept the high-end cake part of her business, but she brought back the brownies and added cookies. One evening each week, Jennie holds an open house. Kids are invited to sample the goodies at no charge. Their parents buy more to take home, and they remember Jennie when they need a high-end cake.

     If you move away from your business core, you are leaving something behind. Maybe you can incorporate a new direction with the old direction and be the better for it.

     Example: Josh is an environmental engineer. Frequently, he gets caught up in the lengthy permitting process for a project. Getting permits in place means keeping abreast of all the local regulations and permits, and this sapped his time and energy. He decided to put part of the process onto his clients--he began requiring them to go for permits and deal with the local bureaucracies. This left Josh with more time to devote to his first love--environmental engineering. But clients resisted his new procedures, and he lost some work because of it. He did a U-turn and, again, as before, began offering to handle the whole project, end to end.

     What saves you time can weigh heavily on your customers. Changing the way you offer your goods and services can have dire consequences in the marketplace. People know what they want, and they come to you to provide it.

     Your business core is who you are. You can grow, expand and even go off in a new direction. Just be careful messing with your original dream.

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