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Stefan Kazakis on 28 January 2016

The foundations for the success of your business

How do you build your business so that it lasts for the long term?

  • Operations - this is where all elements of your business must be predictable and easy to follow. Even businesses that have been operating for many years don’t necessarily have the best operations in place. Every time you grow so do your operations. You must be preparing for future growth. Operations are ongoing. What are the key things you do in this area?
  • Finance - like sport, business has a scoreboard and you must understand it if you are going to win. That scoreboard is finance. You want brutal honesty about how your business is going? Look at your figures. They are the final scoreboard on all the decisions you’ve made in your business. If you’re figures are strong you’ve made good decisions, if not you haven’t. It’s that simple.
  • Marketing - marketing is 24/7. It’s ongoing. It happens long before the first sale and way after the latest one. You can see how this works in the diagram below. If you build your USP this will help you build your ESP, which will lead to a growth in your CSP, and this provides validation for your USP which allows you to build on it further, which leads to…and on it goes. How’s that for a virtuous cycle?
  • Sales - you need to make it easy to buy from you with a process of multiple steps, so that when people knock on your door you lead them through the process. Remember, your competitors are lurking just around the corner waiting to snap up customers if you make things difficult. Sales is the only activity that actually puts money into your business. Everything else takes it out. It is fundamentally important to grow this.
  • Customer loyalty - after you’ve closed the sale, it’s about keeping them – for life. Make them advocates and raving fans. Customer loyalty is when people will not leave you just because something is cheaper or fancier or newer elsewhere – they truly belong to you. You should be building this because it’s cheaper to keep a customer than it is to find a new one. You need to keep being relevant and valuable.
  • Team - team is last because at this point you are growing with people on your team who are better than you. You are growing them for the long term. They are involved and included and as interested in the success of your business as you are. You are leading and they are following.

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