The smartest person in the world can be the worst business person. A dumber person can also make the right business moves and succeed. Running a successful business has little to do with how intelligent you are and a lot to do with these important items:
Products or Services
Do you offer something that people need or want? Do you offer them at adequate qualities and reasonable prices? Is there something that sets you apart from the competition? If you answered no for any of these questions, change it.
Is your business location convenient for customers? If not, that’s a problem. Do you know why people love Amazon and online shopping in general? They don’t have to drive anywhere, they know whether an item is in stock or not and prices are typically lower or the same as brick and mortar stores.
The same goes for why Netflix overtook Blockbuster video. Give people better value and more convenient ways of doing business with you and they will come.
I used to work on a show where successful business leaders were interviewed. The most common thing they said was they surrounded themselves with people who are smarter than them and better at what they do than them. But perhaps most importantly, they would trust those employees to get their jobs done and not micro manage them. Trust and hiring talented employees can make or break a company.
Does your business location look clean and tidy? How about your web site and social media pages? Do you even have a web site and social media pages for your business? Do you post on a regular basis? Does the web site provide useful and concise information? First impressions are everything and you can lose a potential customer in less than 30 seconds if anything about your company/brand looks unprofessional or out of place.
This web site is a good example. To start Don’t Go to Recording School I had to learn a few new things about web sites and graphic design, otherwise it would look like my past web sites. If that were the case, people who come here may not take the information seriously. It still isn’t perfect but it’s better than what I’ve done before.
You could have the best business in the world but if no one knows who you are then your business may as well not exist. I state this from experience. Marketing is crucial to a business’ success. Perhaps above all else because there are some bad businesses out there but they have a recognizable name. And guess what? They also have customers.
This is an area where even large businesses fail. They grow too fast. Or, they establish operations in an unnecessarily expensive area. They don’t take advantage of tax write offs. My cousin lost his job because a company did this. You can run a web site/app company from any part of the country. But what did his company decide to do because they got a large IPO injection of money from the stock market? Set up headquarters in the most expensive piece of real estate in the entire country. Less than two years later and they were bleeding money. So, they layed off a ton of workers.
All because they didn’t keep their finances in check. They didn’t save for a rainy day, as my grand parents would say. And they paid for it by having to fire a bunch of people.
It does not take a genius to make the above happen. It does take effort though and if it wasn’t clear already running a business is not for the lazy at heart. It takes a lot of behind the scenes leg work to run a successful business. Most businesses fail within the first two years. Mostly because there was failure in one or more of the above categories.