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Three Relationship Tips for Small Business

We all know that most small businesses don’t make it past four years. So you have started your business and not gone bust! Well done.

But after survival phase, you need to find a way to manage growth of your business. Growth is more likely to follow relationships, than sales. So here are three relationship tips that are worth thinking about:

  1. Customers. Build relationships with your customers, even if they are not your biggest ones. This takes time, but need not be expensive. You don’t need to take them out to lunch, or send little gifts with your business name on. A quick unexpected phone call, a personalised email, or some timely information can be very effective. Be clear that you want a business relationship. Always talk about them first, ask a question, try and find out at least one thing you did not know before and don’t be afraid to ask directly for a referral. But most importantly, know their history! Make sure you know what business you have previously done with them, how long they have been a customer, keep phone notes, emails and other communications handy and part of your customer records. If you can demonstrate that you know your clients, they will respect you for it. It is clear that if people respect you, they will remember you and refer you.
  2. Your team. Your team are both your frontline brand and the key to efficiency! It is much harder to find and develop good staff, than it is to keep the good staff you already have. So how do you develop good relationships with your staff? Empathy, good humour and patience are probably most important. Remember that everyone is not like you (probably a good thing), and learn to appreciate and leverage the relative strengths in your team members. But equally important is to stay organised and clear in your communications. Most people don’t mind being asked to do things at work, as long as the process and instruction is clear and the outcome is recognised. Setting up simple workflow will help to keep people organised. Providing all team members with clear instructions, and a simple interface to report on outcomes will help keep everyone happy and will also help you manage those situations where things don’t go according to plan!
  3. Yourself and your family. Running a business is hard work and almost always eats into your personal time. This is normal and acceptable, as long as you love being in business in the first place. But always remember why you have gone into business and what you want in your life when you have sold the business or retired. Ultimately your business should work for you, not the other way around. If you do not have good systems in place that automate your workflow, keep your records in place and keep finances under control, then you will waste a lot of time chasing your tail. Typically this is the time that eats into your personal life. So if you care about yourself, support yourself with systems that free up your time.

Things You Need to Do Before You Sell Your Small Business

Getting ready to sell your small business involves multiple preparatory steps. There are so many things you will need to do and think about before completing the sale. Here are some of the most important considerations and the things you will need to do before you sell your business.

Get Your Documents in Order
Making sure that all of your financial documentation is in perfect order will be vital for a successful property sale.

Double check the numbers and work with a professional accountant on eliminating issues and errors. Spotless book keeping can determine the outcome of the business sale process.

You should also make sure that you have dealt with all taxes and administrative procedures prior the sale. The new business owner should get an opportunity to start fresh and without worrying about the issues you failed dealing with.

Assess Strengths and Weaknesses
You have time to evaluate some shortcomings and to come up with a plan for addressing such issues adequately before attempting to sell your small business.

A strengths and weaknesses analysis will give you a better idea about the value of your business. There could be some serious issues that you will need to address before launching the business sale marketing campaign.

Dealing with shortcomings and problems early enough can help you increase the value of your business in the long-term. Performing such analysis can be difficult since you are biased and emotionally-invested. Relying on a professional advisor in such situation will give you some clarity about the situation and the things that need to be done.

Stay Focused on Business until You Sell
The fact that you are planning to sell business does not mean that the process is already completed. Stay focus on everyday business activities until you manage to finalize the sale.

So many business owners and managers enter a “sale mode” after they take the decision to find a new owner for the company. They stop being involved and they stop working hard on keeping things going as smoothly as possible.

“Checking out” so early will be detrimental. The business is still yours. The chance of selling will depend on the management you do during that period. Talk to employees and let them know that everything will be happening as it used to in the past. The status quo should be maintained until the sale is completed.

Build Your Personal Financial Plan
The business sale will probably generate significant revenue. You need some idea about the best investment option, after you are done with the sale. What are your long-term financial goals? Do you plan to start a new business? Is the money needed for your retirement? Think about it and do the necessary planning before you manage to complete the sale.

You should also understand the fact that after being done with the sale, you will be deprived of a source of income. Figure out how this is going to impact you and what you need to do to ensure your long-term financial stability.

There are many things you need to do and plan before selling your small business. Some of these involve your professional future and some focus on your personal finances. Use the months before the sale to strategize and to get a better understanding of what needs to be done prior, during and after the sale.

iPhone App Development for Business

iPhone has turned out to be one of the most revolutionary innovations that the world has seen. When it was launched, it was the first smart phone that the world saw. It brought together such features that a common mobile owner had never seen. However, even after numerous new phones have attempted to imitate the success of iPhone, this first generation smart phone still remains the industry-leader.

As a business owner, how would iPhone app development be helpful to you? Why would you want to develop iPhone applications? Here are some reasons that compel forward-looking businesses to have a high-utility iPhone app that captures the interests of its target audience:

CONSUMER CONNECT: The first, and the most compelling, reason why businesses prefer to have an iPhone application for themselves is because it helps them better connect with their customers. The world of business, over a period of time, has become extremely competitive. With product differentiation being a thing of the past, businesses strive to differentiate themselves by the customer relations that they maintain. That is where an iPhone application can seamlessly fit the bill.

MARKETING: If building relations with existing customers was one of the most important reasons why businesses had iPhone apps developed, the purpose of marketing isn’t lagging far behind either. Professionals are realizing that with the high level of clutter in all media, they have to think out of the box to reach their target audience. What could be better than having an engaging iPhone application?

EFFICIENCY: Another reason why businesses are developing iPhone applications is to build more efficiency. In the past, there were computer based systems which would evaluate performance, and perform various other mundane tasks for the businesses. However, many of the businesses’ top representatives are today in the field most of the times. This calls of having a system which could keep them connected on the go. An iPhone based application can not only make them stay connected with the office at all times, it escalates their efficiency too.

KNOWLEDGE: With the fast paced changes in technology, and the other developments; businesses need to stay connected with the latest that is happening in the industry. However, it is not only about garnering knowledge, but it is also about distributing the same to the people in the organization who might benefit from the same. Therefore, internal applications are being developed by businesses to share marketing intelligence.

EASE OF PURCHASE: Finally, another important reason why businesses are developing iPhone based applications is that they want to make it simpler for their customers to buy their products. For example, a retail outlet could post its new stock on the app where the customers can access. This means that they know everything that is available at the store even before they drive there. Moreover, the customers can also avail the opportunity of buying online. This saves them a considerable amount of time.

In short, iPhone application development has turned out to be one of the most crucial strategies of businesses.