When businesses begin to struggle it can be extremely challenging to overcome.
The natural human tendency is to lower your head, work harder, and hope for the best. The only problem with this approach is it a strategy of isolationism. This is exactly the opposite strategy a struggling business needs! What happens in nature when a wounded or sick animal separates itself from the herd? It dies or is killed!
The reason the business is struggling in the first place is due in part to the strategies it employs to operate the business. So, when you put your head down, work harder, and hope for the best all you are doing is reinforcing strategies that do not produce the outcome and results you want. STOP IT! The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. That is exactly what you are doing when you employ the head down – work harder – hope for the best strategy.
Here are three simple & powerful tips that will help turn around a struggling business:
1. Hire an outside expert for a few hours a week
Why someone from the outside? Because this person has a completely different viewpoint of the world and is not wrapped up in your paradigm, prejudices, views, and options. This person will help you “Get Out of Your Head” and see the world from a totally different perspective. This can be relativity inexpensive at first ($500) and increase as your needs increase. You will be hiring someone who is going to challenge you and if they don’t challenge you – fire them and find someone else.
2. Write a business plan & marketing plan
Business plans and marketing plans are different. I suggest that you start with your marketing plan. Keep in mind I am not suggesting you run off to an advertising firm as your first move. Those firms are going to need your plan before they can begin their work. If you believe you can’t write your own plan – STOP IT! It is not that difficult, and no one knows your business better than you. If you need a little help, ask your outside expert. When you develop a written plan, start with defining your ideal customer, message, and the media you plan to use. There are other parts of a marketing plan that need to be developed as well; however, if you start with these three basic elements you will be surprised how much you will learn about yourself and your struggles.
3. Remember your why
When the going gets tough, the tough get going, or they quit. Most of the time they just quit. They run out of resources like money and convince themselves that their dream will never work. Fear and doubt sets in and they flat out quit. They forget the reasons why they started in the first place. The passion they felt, the excitement, the belief they had in themselves, and their vision of the future. STOP IT! The fight is only over when you say it’s over. The passion you felt in the beginning is exactly what you need most when your business is struggling. Convince yourself that you will find the resources you need, and better days are ahead!