A solar eclipse happens when the moon moves directly in the path of the sun, only allowing you at its peek to see the outer edges of the sun. Go with me here as a small business owner how would it effect you and your business if something stood right in the path between you and your customers?
I mean how could you fix this problem? Would you take this as a sign that it’s the end of your business? I mean you could go from making $1000 per day to $100 a day. That would be the proverbial nail in the coffin of any business that kind of revenue loss could be devastating.
So how do you protect your business from outsiders who can come in throw a lot of money on the table and steal all your customer? This story I’m creating is just an example of real life. Right now you could be on top, but tomorrow you could be down in the dumps, about to loose everything. How do you deal with that?
- First you must not put all your eggs in one basket, as a business owner you cannot allow one source of income to produce more then 35% of your over all revenue. As an example if you have a photography business, you cannot just rely on Family Portraits, as a photographer you must divest in other sources of income, such as some commercial contracts that pay very well, but don’t always come through out the year just like wedding photography (seasonal).
- As a business owner you must have some cash for reserves to ensure that during the hard times you can still take care of the business. Keeping your staff count low, and ensure you always look for the best price. You must keep up with your cost, and watch your vendors.
- I just said watch your vendors, when times are great everyone knows it and when they do, the dollar signs show. So keep your business to yourself, don’t give so much information to your vendor who’s coming in just to check on you. Most of the time they are doing a quick recon mission to see how things are going just so they can soften the conversation about that 10% increase in the cost of supplies that are going up with no reason as to why.
- Enjoy your business so many of us get caught up with blinders all zoned in on one thing the money, that we neglect to see when people are reaching out to us such as the employee that has found a way to keep some cost down, not by being cheap, but by surveying the land for more then one vendor every 6 months. Or they see new competition in their neighborhood that could cause issues for your business, it’s always good to treat your employees with respect and they will respond with a loyalty you can’t imagine.
- Last your business has thrived because you treat every customer as if they were your last. Customer service in the “now economy” is the key to obtaining new business, and definitely keeping business. You can’t expect to grow with out continued business from your most loyal customers. Remember there are good customers that allow you to make a profit, love your product and champion your business to other, and then there are those who want to nickle and dime you on everything you sale. You have to know the difference yes treat them the same, but don’t bend over backwards for those who give you resistance about price.
- You are the expert, make sure that you are getting what your worth and never discount your service, because if you do it, you may end up doing it again, and again, and again, you get the picture
The truth hurts indeed, but being prepared for the good times as well as the bad, any solar eclipse that comes for your business will regret they day they tried to take you on head to head.