As a small business owner, the one certainty that you can count on is uncertainty. In a market economy and under a fair system of government, very few small businesses are guaranteed any level of success – even franchises of established companies can fail for any number of reasons, and when you venture out completely on your own, presenting your own original product or service to the world, the going can be even rockier.
Adapt To Change
When so many small businesses and organizations fail within the first five years, simply surviving can certainly be considered a measure of success. However, simply surviving isn’t good enough when future success isn’t assured – smart small business owners know that they have to continually set new goals and continually plan for the future. However, even smart small business owners sometimes fail to grasp that existing goals, like just about every other aspect of business, continually change and evolve over time. By embracing your evolving goals, rather than resisting or even disregarding them, you can better adapt to change and be better prepared for the future.
Understanding The Big Picture
Normally when you’re told that you are “short-sighted,” it’s a bad thing – in reference to actual eyesight, it’s an obvious impairment! For small business owners, being short-sighted often means being entirely focused on serving customers and clients, and in a world of online reviews and social media chatter, staying laser-focused on your customers is often the best way to meet your short to mid-term profitability goals, earn repeat business and ultimately build a sterling reputation and a solid client base. There is certainly nothing wrong with this “short-sightedness”, but developing and meeting evolving business goals often requires a broader focus on your local community and market, your competitors, and your industry as a whole. Meeting revenue benchmarks is certainly important, but if a competitor develops a superior product or service, or begins to consistently undercut your prices, you may suddenly find your business struggling with very little warning.
Be Aware Of What Is Happening
Don’t get too caught up in grasping the big picture – the insight you’ll need to master your evolving business goals doesn’t require that you become an industry expert or gain the same level of business insight as a third-party consultant. You should be able to set aside a minimal amount of time and resources in order to remain aware of what’s happening around your industry and community, and with that awareness you should be able to begin developing and embracing your evolving goals and meeting new challenges.
Training Yourself And Your Staff To Be Flexible
To embrace your evolving business goals, it is also imperative that you train yourself and your staff to be flexible. As we all know, there is a world of difference between identifying, documenting and pledging to meet a new goal and actually following through and doing it – just imagine if we all actually followed through on every New Year’s resolution that we set for ourselves! In the business world, countless hours and dollars are spent on motivational speeches, seminars, and training, all with the intention of better preparing us for future challenges, and it’s important to ensure that you and your staff are ready before making those investments. As owner or manager, it is your job to lead by example, so be sure that you are open and receptive to learning how your business and industry evolves and changes, even if that means stepping out of your comfort zone in new and unexpected ways.