No matter the economy, CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners have a desire to improve and grow their business. Not even the worst economy since the Great Depression can keep a good business person from achieving success. Where there is will, drive and determination, there is always a way to succeed in business. It’s just a matter of perseverance and finding a legal, ethical, innovative way to succeed.
Lately, I’ve been hearing more business people say they want to grow their business. Translation: Business people, though still highly cautious about the economy, realize they need to move forward for business survival. Otherwise, the greater fear is being left behind and the competition takes the business.
Yet there is a misconception when business people talk about wanting to grow their business. It seems like the right thing to say and the right question to ask is: How can I make my business grow? But that’s not where you want to start.
The primary question you want to ask yourself is: Am I operating the most profitable business I can?
In order to answer the question you need to ask a series of other questions.
Questions To Ask Before Deciding To Grow Your Business
- Do I truly understand my business?
- Is the reason I am in business today the same as when I started the business?
- Do I understand the needs of my employees, customers and vendors?
- Do I understand how to lead my company to greater success?
- What are the weaknesses of my business? What am I going to do to correct them?
- What are the strengths of my business? How am I going to maximize them?
- Have I done a study of the marketplace to understand how it has changed since the Great Recession of 2008 or since other major shifts have occurred in my industry?
- What are my customers’ needs now? How have they evolved since we started to do business together?
- When I lose business to the competition do I view this as a valuable learning tool? Do I find out what I could have done better to win that business?
- What is my daily work attitude? Am I ready to undertake new business challenges?
- How do I think about business on a daily basis? How have my thoughts changed over the years?
- How will my company need to change in order to grow the business?
After you have done a thorough complete study of everything I’ve talked about here (and you may have other questions to add to the list). Then, and only then, you can think about the possibility of putting together a plan to grow your business.
But until can provide solid, realistic answers, growing your business may not be a formula for success. Instead, to grow your business may only be creating more business problems for you. Are you ready to handle those problems, many of which cannot always be anticipated.
Business growth does not guarantee business success. You may be better off to stay where you are with your business and continue to improve it which also has it rewards – such as more profit and less stress.
Think of it this way: It is only logical to build a solid foundation before you build a new house. Without the solid foundation, the house cannot be built as it will not pass inspection and will eventually fall. The same will happen with your business. If there isn’t a solid foundation, the business will not just falter but more than likely, fail.
Ask yourself one more question: What needs resolved before adding more?
If you want to succeed and be more profitable, first things first. Get your business in order. Make every aspect of your business more efficient and profitable. When you are sure you have done everything you can do to make your business better, then and only then, grow your business.
Howard Lewinter guides, focuses and advises CEOs, presidents and business owners to greater success and profit. Visit Howard’s website and blog, Talk Business With Howard; also, listen to Howard’s internet radio show on Blog Talk Radio and connect with him on Twitter: @HowardLewinter.
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