Real Strategies, Practical Advice and Inspiration for the Aspiring Entrepreneur
Entrepreneurship and small business ownership continue to increase within the United States. The COVID-19 pandemic has also impacted the number of employees who have left their day jobs and contributed to more women starting their own businesses. This is both exciting and scary at the same time considering that 20% of businesses fail within their first year of operation.
Building, scaling, and profiting for a successful business is fundamental and often times entrepreneurs and small business owners are left to their own devices to learn, navigate and build for sustainability and growth in an ever-changing competitive market. The pandemic taught us that now more than ever it is most important to be proactive versus reactive in decision-making. “Striking While the Iron is Hot” (an expression used to describe acting decisively and taking an opportunity when it arises) is like Striking Business Gold.
Similarly, Striking Business Gold is an expression we define as acting decisively and wisely when entrepreneurship & business opportunities arise.
Below are 7 Strategic Strategies to Help You to Strike Business Gold:
1. Create a Business Plan & Execute Strategic Planning
A business plan tackles the most fundamental aspect of creating a solid building block and a forward direction for your business. It helps you to address financial, marketing, operational, and strategic partnerships among many other aspects of your business. Your business plan is a living breathing document that does not stay static & expected to evolve over time. Most importantly, writing a business plan provides you (leadership) and your teams with direction. It functions as a compass assisting with goal setting and visioning. It helps you to be realistic about where you are and where you want to go, allowing you to keep track. Last, but certainly not least, it helps you to address your core values, morals, vision, unique selling proposition (USP), mission, and year-by-year goals.
2. Create a Strong Infrastructure
It takes time to build a good solid business that can withstand external conditions and grow through capacity building. Strategic planning allows for you to build a solid foundation for your business and help to ensure that it has a better chance of withstanding external marketing and uncontrollable circumstances, including market competition. This means that the right legal, financial, and operational elements in a business should be established and functioning well. This also increases your chance of withstanding tough times when it is necessary to pivot your business.
3. Implement the Right Legal Foundation for Your Businesses
Often times, entrepreneurs and small business owners become confused or are unaware of legal aspects of the business.
If the correct legal entity is not formed, this can affect your business and personal liabilities & assets.
There are ramifications in industry or state compliance that can cost you in the long run if not addressed early on.
A strong legal foundation can also help you to form strong hiring practices.
It’s important to protect your intellectual property (IP) prior to launching creative services or products.
Doing your legal due diligence protects you as a business owner and organization at any stage of your business cycle.
4. Incorporate Operational & Organizational Systems in Your Company
Creating the right organizational structure helps with clarity, direction, and expectation within your company. It sets the tone for how you will function and communicate with one another. Companies have moved away from, the traditional hierarchy (top-down approach) to improve company culture, communications, and ownership. This helps to create an atmosphere of robust ideas and innovation. The pandemic has taught us that there are new innovative ways to work globally, which include laterally and across when new organizational systems are in place.
Operational processes & systems help to map out how businesses should operate and have become a must-have. It improves sustainability, business continuity in the midst of crisis, and better communication between employees and across company sites. It establishes how everyone functions as a piece of the puzzle. Clear human resource (HR) onboarding, policies & procedures, and standard operating procedures (SOPs) produce a certain level of performance and quality. Employees and customers understand how to deliver and what to expect.
All businesses have at least six core processes that should be mapped out and communicated across their teams.
5. Hire the Right Talent & Scale Wisely
“The cost of losing an employee is around 1.5- 2% times their salary”. This is one of the most important and difficult tasks in building your company. Building and scaling require strategically planning the talent & roles you will need on your team, recognizing when you will need them, and finding talent that complements one another. Not everyone is good at everything nor can they do everything. At some point, you will need to delegate. There is an art to hiring right which can save you the time, cost, and agony of hiring the wrong employee. Hiring right will also save you from liabilities and high turnover. It’s about identifying talent & ensuring you are placing them in the right role.
6. Target the Right Market in a Competitive Market
Target marketing & creating a marketing plan helps you to be more selective and targeted so you are not swimming blindly in a sea of competition. Branding and building brand awareness are key to driving business your way.
What is the need for your product and service and what does the competitive landscape look like?
How will you market your company and stay relevant and visible?
How will you create brand awareness and develop your brand?
Where will you price your product and service?
7. Build Useful Networks & Strategic Partners
To be successful in business, you need others. The pandemic taught us more than anything that we need human connectivity and transaction in our daily lives- both to survive and to thrive. Smart businesses are no longer functioning at the basic transactional level. Individuals (starting with business owners & leadership) need to develop good relational rapport with internal and external stakeholders. Additionally, businesses are expected to play a key role in society, environmental concerns, and communities. Connecting with the right affiliations, consultants, advisory council, and mentors are key for business owners and larger companies. We must build together.
Often times, business owners and leadership feel lost and overwhelmed when starting or pivoting a business.
Striking Business Gold is about building, scaling, and profiting for success and avoiding some unnecessary pitfalls.
PICK UP A COPY OF OUR NEWLY RELEASED BOOK FOR A DEEPER DIVE INTO STRATEGIES, PRACTICAL TIPS, AND EASY TO FOLLOW GUIDE ON BUILDING A STRONGER FOUNDATION.
STRIKING BUSINESS GOLD is a digestible read for time-starved and information-overloaded entrepreneurs, a go-to resource to avoid the pitfalls of operating a small business, and a straightforward, fun, and easy-to-read reference guide with practical business information you need. All in one book!
Striking Business Gold is available at www.mvslegacyadvisors.com and major retailers.
Sasha Lalite, MPA, PMP is owner and Principal Consultant of Meta Viable Solutions LLC. She is a Fractional COO & Strategic Operations Advisor who provides expertise to businesses on an outsourced, part-time, or project basis. Meta Viable Solutions helps businesses during times of change, transition and growth. Sasha has successfully improved individual and organizational performance in national and global companies for the past 20 years. Sasha can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (347) 470-7901. Connect on social media @metaviablesolutions. For more information visit Meta Viable Solutions LLC is available at: metaviablesolutions.com