How Well are You Putting the Puzzle Together? (Part 2)

Posted by karllebert on November 13, 2017

Learn the Seven Specific Areas that are Essential to Success

In our last post, we addressed the first three areas of the seven specific areas that you need to consider when systematizing your business. Again, the seven areas are:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organizational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy

Properly leaning how to deploy these seven specific strategies in your business will begin the process of fine turning your plan to reach your ultimate level of success. This post is going to address the last four areas.

Think of constructing your business model like planting a tree. At first, it’s so small and weak you wonder if it will even make it through the night. But, you keep watering, fertilizing and nurturing it. As your ideas take root, the trunk will grow and each of these strategies will extend out as the branches of your now strong tree. Finding the perfect support staff, employees, vendors/suppliers and other relationships will make your tree flourish with leaves and flowers.

Management Strategy

The way you structure your management team is essential to more than just your business growth. The happiness of your employees and, ultimately, your customers/clients depends on your management strategy. The best strategy is a results-oriented approach and one that doesn’t depend on specific people doing the work but rather the business systems you have installed.

Your management strategy should include performance standards that include goals, rules of behavior, a mission statement and other concrete things that instruct your employees how to act, your management team how to grow your business and your customers/clients what they can expect.

These should all be in perfect alignment with your business goals.

Employee Appreciation Strategy

You need to put together a people strategy that shows your employees how you feel about their job performance and dedication to your business. They also need to understand “why” they are doing specific tasks. This helps them to personally connect to their job which in turn leads to better production and a happier workplace.

There are several strategies you can use to keep it interesting at “the office”:

  • Performance Incentive Program
  • Contests that reward high performance
  • Employee of the Month
  • Performance/Holiday Bonuses

These are just a few of the ideas you can use. One of the best ways to appreciate your employees is by calling a meeting and asking them how they would like to be rewarded. Don’t just quickly put something into place. Spend some time thinking about which strategy would be best for your situation and put it in place. Every so often change things up and employ a different strategy. That way it will stay fresh and keep employees engaged. Once they get used to the reward, it might be time for a whole new approach.

Lastly, you need to develop a culture within your company that speaks to the type of interactions that are encouraged. Things like support, appreciation and respect should be the cornerstone of your culture. Creating a positive environment where employees feel “at home” will have great returns as productivity will improve and loyalty will increase.

Marketing Strategy

Marketing is, of course, essential to the success of any business. Your marketing strategy should have the fundamental goal of growing sales and achieving a sustainable competitive advantage. Strategic marketing concerns itself with improving the organization’s competitive position while taking into consideration the opportunities and challenges in the current competitive environment. But it must also work cohesively with overall plan you have for your business.

A couple of the major pillars of any successful marketing strategy are the demographic and psychographic make-up of your customers. Let’s start with their demographic profile. This provides you with details about who your customers are in terms of age, gender, marital status, race, ethnicity, education and of course income. All of which can help you learn why they buy specific items.

On the other hand, the psychographic makeup of your customers tells more about what your customers are most likely to purchase. This analysis will provide you with information about your customers interests, activities, opinions, values and attitudes.

Without this information, it simply doesn’t matter how successful you are at in systematizing other parts of your business.

Systems Strategy

Business systems can be defined as a methodical procedure or process that is used as a delivery mechanism for providing goods or services to customers. Business systems help deliver desired solutions to customers more effectively .

There are three types of systems in every business:

  • Hard Systems
  • Soft Systems
  • Information Systems

Hard systems refer to an inanimate system or systems that have no “life”. Soft systems are those that could be living. Information systems which are, of course, everything else, including customer data, product information, financial…anything with data and numbers.

Of the three systems, the soft systems are the most important because they include the sales systems of your business.

The most important of all three systems is the soft systems because it includes the sales systems your business uses. In your sales system the two keys to success are: structure and substance. Structure being what you sell and substance being how you sell it.

All three systems are essential to the success of your business and while they all have their own very specific roles, they all must work together to get the job done. This also goes for your entire business development program.

Recap

The last several blog posts have addresses how to systematize your business to produce greater results. It seems that now is a good time to reiterate key points of these business development ideas.

First, we addressed the entrepreneurial myth (E-myth) or the assumption that anyone can succeed at business with:

  • Desire
  • Some capital
  • Projected a targeted profit

Then we covered the three key roles that need to be filled to set your business up for success:

  • Technician
  • Manager
  • The Entrepreneur

Next the four different stages of a business maturity or life cycle were discussed:

  • Infancy
  • Adolescence
  • Beyond the Comfort Zone
  • Maturity

Then we tackled three things to consider in starting a new business or buying a franchise that set it up for success:

  • Business Format Franchise
  • The Franchise Prototype
  • Franchise Prototype Standards

We also examined the three main areas to successfully build a solid foundation for your business:

  • Innovation
  • Quantification
  • Orchestration

Again, the seven specific areas essential to successfully systematizing your business are:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organizational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy

We can help you work through all of these areas and give your business the jumpstart you desire which will put you ahead of your competition right from the start. Why not take our FREE test drive and work directly with a coach? Plus, you will gain access to a wealth of knowledge, tools and resources.

Kinetic Business Strategies helps overworked business owners systematically transform their business so they can more effectively grow revenue, improve cash flow & profits, increase the business’s value and achieve a better work / life balance.

How Well are You Putting the Puzzle Together?

Posted by karllebert on October 31, 2017

Learn the Seven Specific Areas that are Essential to Business Success

The seven specific areas that you need to consider when systematizing your business are:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organizational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy

Employing these in your business will begin the process of fine turning your plan to reach your ultimate level of success. While all of these are important, today we are going to cover just the first three.

Primary Aim

As an entrepreneur or business owner, you are tasked with many responsibilities. None more important that setting the Primary Aim of your business. To successfully develop your business, you will need to establish goals and to see a vision for the future. But your vision needs to be broad-based and go beyond the business itself. You’ll need to think about what you want out of life, what makes you happy, what are your dreams and how you see your success unfolding.

Why is this important?

Knowing and understanding these things will provide momentum during start-up and stamina to persevere when things get tough. You’ll even want to memorialize your vision in writing so that it can be a constant reminder for you and your team as well as to keep you focused on what’s most important. This “Vision Statement” should be directed toward your team members and other stakeholders of the organization and create a sense of possibility using anticipatory language and images of the preferred future.

Strategic Objectives

A Strategic Objective is a measurable concrete step you need to take to achieve a specific strategy in pursuit of a broader goal. Having these are essential for you to take your business from surviving to thriving. These objectives should provide a solution to help you achieve your primary aim.

While there are many areas to set strategic objectives some of the more common include money and worthy opportunities.

  • Setting monetary goals is a great way to determine how well you are doing at any point. Monetary goals are usually easy to measure and easy to uncover areas for improvement should the need arise to reach the goal.
  • When considering other business opportunities or even strategic partnerships, the key is to assess how they bring you closer to your primary aim. Those that do are the best to seriously consider.

When setting objectives and goals, the key is not to limit your potential or overly stress yourself out. What is needed, are quantifiable objectives that you can use to measure your progress toward your primary aim. While the above are commonly used, it’s important to your success that no matter what strategic objectives you have set out to achieve; you pay attention to the details and the actions needed to accomplish them.

Organizational Strategy

A business can be structured in many different ways depending on its objectives. The strength of its organizational structure can be the difference between just surviving and thriving. So, it’s important from the outset to take some time to think about and put together a solid structure for your business. The structure should take into consideration not only where the business is now but also where it intends to be in the future.  Sustainable competitive advantage requires organizations to be efficient, adaptable, innovative and considerate.

Generally, a business is organized around the roles and responsibilities that must be executed on a daily basis and the available talent needed to fulfill those roles.  But no matter what roles and responsibilities you’ve defined for your employees, their focus should be on fulfilling your company’s primary aim. Once you’ve identified the primary aim for your company it will be easy to set up a organizational structure that will work.

It is also essential that each employee clearly understands their roles and responsibilities. This can be accomplished through position contracts or detailed job descriptions that are acknowledged by the employee with a signed statement. This will keep things clear for you, the employee and others.

It is easy to see how these areas all work together to build the solid foundation on which to build your business. If you need help in any of these areas, you can check out the resources and tools on our site or discuss with a certified professional coach during your FREE test drive.

Kinetic Business Strategies helps overworked business owners systematically transform their business so they can more effectively grow revenue, improve cash flow & profits, increase the business’s value and achieve a better work / life balance.

What Footers Does Your Business Have in Place?

Posted by karllebert on October 3, 2017

Learn the Three Keys to Building a Solid Foundation!

Ask any home builder or civil engineer and they will tell you that one of the keys to a structurally sound building is having solid footers in place. The primary purpose of footers is to distribute the weight of the structure over a greater area and thus prevent settling that would likely occur without them.

Solid foundations are critical to building a successful business as well. This article addresses three key areas of business development and how you can put the right foundation in place upon which to build your business.

The three main areas of business development that we’ll address are:

  • Innovation
  • Quantification
  • Orchestration

If done well these three areas will help you build a solid foundation for your business. Let’s talk about each one of these for just a minute.

Innovation

Innovation is real work and should not be confused with creativity, which is the expression of ideas. It is about methodically analyzing opportunities, developing imaginative responses and then putting them into action.  Peter Drucker maintains that most innovative business ideas are the result of looking for opportunities in the following seven areas.

  1. Unexpected Occurrences
  2. Incongruities
  3. Process Needs
  4. Industry and Market Changes
  5. Demographic Changes
  6. Changes in Perception, Meaning and Mood
  7. New Knowledge

The most successful business owners and entrepreneurs realize this early and maintain a commitment to the systematic practice of innovation. This is where a large amount of your focus should be in the early stages of your business and should remain throughout your business’ entire lifespan.

“The enterprise that does not innovate, inevitably ages and declines.”

– Peter Drucker, American Management Consultant

Quantification

Of course, it takes much more for an innovative idea to lead to business success. The question becomes, does the idea have value and will there be a return on investment? Research confirms that over 50% of ideas lead to losses of all kinds due to the inherent risk and uncertainty associated innovation.  Some these losses are monetary but they can also include such things as motivation and trust.

So how do you attempt to measure an innovative idea?

The best way to gauge the merits of an innovative idea is by assessing potential customer response. How much energy, time and effort does your potential customer need to put into using your product or service to meet their real or perceived need compared to how they are currently meeting that need.

Then once an idea is placed into action, look for positive responses for what you are doing right and keep doing it. Also, look at any negative responses to find out what you’re doing wrong-and fix it. This will enable you to keep growing and progressing with the needs of your customers and business climate.

“Innovation is both conceptual and perceptual… Successful innovators…look at figures, and they look at people. They work out analytically what the innovation has to be to satisfy an opportunity. And then they go out and look at the customers, the users, to see what their expectations, their values, their needs are.”

– Peter Drucker, American Management Consultant

Orchestration

Once you have determined what areas are working best, you can begin the narrowing process. Concentrate on these areas and make them stand out ideas. By shifting your focus to these select elements of your innovation, you will get the most out of your business as well as satisfy the needs of your customers.

“An innovation, to be effective, has to be simple and focused. It should do only one thing, otherwise, it confuses. All effective innovations are breathtakingly simple. Indeed, the greatest praise an innovation can receive is for people to say: ‘This is obvious. Why didn’t I think of it?’”

– Peter Drucker, American Management Consultant

We can help you implement these three areas in your business while you take your FREE test drive of our E-Learning system.

Over the next few weeks we are going to address following seven specific areas that you need to consider while systematizing your business.

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organizational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy

These seven critical areas will fine tune your plan to reach your ultimate level of success.

Kinetic Business Strategies helps overworked business owners systematically transform their business so they can more effectively grow revenue, improve cash flow & profits, increase the business’s value and achieve a better work / life balance. 

 

Considering a Franchise or Independent Small Business?

Posted by karllebert on September 26, 2017

One way of becoming a business owner is to acquire a turn-key business like a franchise. Franchise businesses are easy to acquire, provide a seemingly higher probability of success and practically pop out of the box with a preassembled system. While the success rate of franchise businesses after five years is widely reported to be high, there really is no credible studies to confirm the number. That being said, franchises do provide advantages over going it alone.  And it seems that there is a franchise for just about every industry you can name.

Research does show that the larger the business, the better the survival rate regardless whether it’s a franchise or an independent business. When it comes to franchise success, you need to look no further that McDonald’s. There are approximately 37,000 company owned and franchised locations worldwide doing over $50 billion in revenue.

Some of the reasons to choose a franchise are:

  • Track Record of Success
  • Instant Brand Recognition
  • Training and Ongoing Support
  • Proven Business Systems
  • Established Marketing Strategies
  • Lower Risk

Now, let’s address a few more things in a little more depth including:

  • Business Format Franchise
  • The Franchise Prototype
  • Franchise Prototype Standards

Business Format Franchise

The most common form of franchising is the Business Format Franchise. The business format franchise developed from an earlier model call the “trade name” franchise. The big change between the two was in the form of rights. During the “trade name” days the franchise owner only had marketing right’s, now franchise owners have rights to the entire business including the business format, operating systems and trademarks. This has allowed for a shift in focus from quality and name recognition of the products to business methods like the sales techniques that drive business success.

The Franchise Prototype

The advent of the Franchise Prototype allowed for further changes to be made. Today’s franchisees can really stand out because of the techniques and processes that they have developed rather than only using those of the franchisor. This can make a significant difference in the success of the franchise as the owner can custom tailor their marketing and promotions to the direct needs of their local target customers. The business can also establish and document their own systems so that tasks are performed consistently and customers will have predictable experiences.

Franchise Prototype Standards

Now, the above being said, no one in their right mind would purchase a franchise if the parent company didn’t have certain systems and a solid plan of action set up to improve the probability of success of the business. So, most franchisors have developed a few standards that should be put into place to help jump start the process of opening a successful franchise.

The franchisor needs to build a business model that addresses prospective customers or clients, suppliers and employees so that it can consistently offer high quality work. The business should build and provide:

  1. A user-friendly model that can be used by individuals of any skill set.
  2. A defect-free model.
  3. A model with Operations Manuals.
  4. A model that will provide guaranteed, consistent results.
  5. A model that encompasses the same branding in color, dress and facilities codes.

These are all ways the franchisor makes sure their brand stays the same and in the front of the minds of customers. When you are purchasing franchise with a widely-known brand name, you will attract customers just for being you.

However, for your business to be successful, whether a franchise business or independent, it’s important that you are prepared to work hard and are willing to persist. Business success does not just happen because you want it. You must be willing to put in the effort. And when things don’t go as planned, you must have the ability to continue in the face of challenges or even failures.

“There is no substitute for hard work.”

– Thomas Edison

 “Persistence is the price of success.”

– David DeAngelo

If you are considering purchasing a franchise or already are operating one, why not contact us to discuss your options and challenges while taking a FREE test drive of our E-learning system?

Kinetic Business Strategies helps overworked business owners systematically transform their business so they can more effectively grow revenue, improve cash flow & profits, increase the business’s value and achieve a better work / life balance. 

 

Business Maturity – What Level have You Achieved?

Posted by karllebert on September 18, 2017

Discover the Keys to Business Longevity 

No matter what names are used for the various stages, there is a life cycle to every business from the start-up phase on through to being Fortune 500 company. This article tackles how to maximize the results at each stage of the business life cycle while also extending the lifespan of the business.

Michael Gerber in his classic book, The E-Myth, identified four main stages of a business life cycle as:

  • Infancy
  • Adolescence
  • Beyond the Comfort Zone
  • Maturity

The skills needed and challenges faced by a business owner change as the business evolves from infancy to maturity. The following will briefly address what each stage means and how they can each help expand the business’ lifespan.

Infancy

Generally considered to the technician’s phase, infancy is the stage in which the owner is deeply involved in every facet of the business and is constantly juggling tasks to keep the business moving and growing. At this point, the relationship between the business and the owner is more like that of a parent and new born baby. There is an impenetrable bond that is necessary to determine the path your business will follow.

However, as the business continues to grow, it becomes harder and harder for the owner to continue their same level of involvement in every aspect without dropping some balls. Infancy ends when the business owner realizes his role and his business must change in order for it to survive.

The key is to recognize that your business and you must change and grow in order to flourish. The business cannot stay in this stage forever. When business owners try to stay at this stage, they no longer own a business. They have a job and a terrible one at that as they must continue to work it for it to survive.

Adolescence

The adolescence stage begins when the business owner decides to get some help. During this stage, business owners start bringing in support staff and delegating certain functions or tasks to that allow growth to happen. Maybe it’s the tasks the owner doesn’t know how to do or the ones that they don’t want to do. Usually, they bring in someone with a certain level of technical expertise to do the work that’s not getting done like an accountant, salesperson or production person.

However, to be successful at this level the business owner needs to become more of a manager. All too often, the owner hires someone and just assumes that the work will get done just the way they want. How well it is managed and how well the business is able to compete will determine whether it survives and reaches the next stage. Here the business owner needs to start planning for the future.

Beyond the Comfort Zone

At some point or other as the business grows, every business reaches the point where the owner bumps up against the limits of their comfort zone. When pushed outside their comfort zone, business owners often experience anxiety and stress as things begin to feel unfamiliar and outside their control. Suddenly, everything seems chaotic. While growth is a good problem to have, business owners still experience growing pains. Faced with these growing pains, business owners are left with a number of choices.

  • Avoid growth and stay small
  • Keep growing until the business implodes
  • Push forward to the next stage in the business life cycle

Maturity

The last stage in the business life cycle is maturity. This doesn’t mean the end of your business. No, not at all. A mature business knows how it got here and what needs to happen to get where it wants to go next. In other words, business development becomes part of the culture.

The passion for business growth and development must continue for the business to remain successful. For this, the entrepreneurial perspective is required to push the business forward. Some key elements of the entrepreneurial perspective are:

  • Identifying how the business must work
  • Developing systems for producing results
  • Having a well-defined vision of the future
  • Making the necessary changes to achieve the vision
  • Viewing the business in its entirety that is derived from its parts

As you can see, all of these cycles are connected and depend on a strong foundation in each area (Technician, Manager and Entrepreneur) for your business to survive and continue to be successful. All three of these key roles are essential and must work together throughout the business life cycles.

If you’re having trouble putting together your business life cycles and figuring out which of the key roles you fit into, why not take our E-Learning System for a FREE test drive or set up an appointment to work directly with a business coach?

Kinetic Business Strategies helps overworked business owners systematically transform their business so they can more effectively grow revenue, improve cash flow & profits, increase the business’s value and achieve a better work / life balance.