TO FAIL IN BUSINESS, DO THIS!
The business world is a no nonsense one. You are either in or out; it is your choice. It is however a great thing to put in all efforts to make your business thrive and rise above failure and an eventual fold up. Statistics had shown that startup businesses face the risk of failure within the first three years of business operations as a result of any but not limited to these factors:
- Lack of commitment and dedication to the vision of the business venture
- Inadequate or lack of operational funds to continue the business
- Bad business decision making as a result of no or poor market research before the commencement of the business. On the other hand, it could be ignorance or lack of current information of business processes on the part of the promoter of the business if it already existing. Application of understood accurate Information is the lifeline of any thriving business.
- Lack of or inadequate entrepreneurial and business management skills.
As important as the money factor is in business, it is minimal in its significance and order of priority for business success. You could have all the money in the world to begin a business and you might not make a success out of it, thus making it viable.
To experience business failure and eventual fold up, do the following:
- Do not start small: The best way to measure the success, failure and risk of a growing business is to begin small. Beginning small however is relative. One person’s level of smallness might not be the same for another. Starting small opens you up to less resource wastage. This however, does not put a limit on your global thinking. I believe that in business, you should think globally but start local. Starting small helps you to innovatively lay down strategies on executing your business with minimal cash flow. Appreciate your baby steps. e.g consider the option of barter (with your skills) than paying for a service with cash or a partnership for the use a premises for free; rather than rent an office, you could temporarily share with someone not in your lin-e of business or a complimentary business until you can afford an office/shop.
- Do not carry out a market research: a market research or survey is the continual process of taking out time to thoroughly study the market (people, price, location, trends etc) of the product and services you are offering. In doing this, ask yourself questions like: who are my direct and indirect customers/clients? Direct and alternative competitors? Why will they buy from me as against buying from others? What is the present state of the mind set of possible clients? Is my service/product. seasonal? is my price competitive? What strategy can I put in place to attract, sustain and take over clients from other competitors? Is my product/services easily accessible especially in terms of my business location? What are my strength, weaknesses, opportunities and possible threats? Do I employ casual staffs as against full time staffs? etc. Conducting a market research reduces the possible risk of business failure to the barest minimum.
- Budget on not so sure funds you are expecting and also rely solely of the promises of prospective clients: As a startup, work with whatever funds you have at hand or in the bank. This implies that you are not to begin spending on whatever you think you are expecting as revenue from a particular deal
before it comes. It is like building a castle in the air. Some clients make promises and fail. Some, deliberately while others could be as a result of sudden unforeseen circumstances. Thus, so as not to be disappointed, for every word of promise in business, learn to have a plan B & C in the case of eventualities…street knowledge! Until a deal is sealed and money exchanged for service rendered, your business transaction has not been completed. At this point, avoid borrowing or taking a loan for personal needs resting on the premise of expected revenue. A loan could be allowed in the case of a viable short term business opportunity with calculated and measured risk. A loan is money spent in advance; it reduces the value of efforts made in any business transaction and also places an unnecessary burden of your profit. Before taking a loan, make sure you have exhausted all possible options of raising funds.
- Spend time with time wasters: A business person with good business sense can measure if a prospective client will do business or not within the first three minutes of discussion given the right condition and circumstance. Do not spent time with time wasters. They can be identified by the words they say, their body language and immediate silence response to your proposal. Actions speak louder than words. Some prospects might say ‘no’ initially giving you valid reasons for not doing business, but with further friendly and intelligent discussions, they eventually buy you. Thus, don’t take a ‘No’ for an answer from the right people. Keep trying.
- Depend on yourself alone: No one is an island of skills and knowledge, strength and vigor. Learn and cultivate the power of synergy. In down moments in business, connect with people who will motivate and encourage you. In the case of ‘brain block’ where nothing seems to flow, visit friends who you can share thoughts with, thus opening you up for brainstorming, innovation and creativity. Two are better than one. I have older friends in business that I pick their brains with critical questions. They know me for that….brain picker! Not an idea thief…there is a difference.
- Always reject business opportunities: ‘Why not if not’ is a motto that drives me towards wealth creation. ‘Why not, if not’ is another way of saying ‘Never say Never’. Do not reject business offers, no matter how small the contract is. You might not have the technical knowhow to execute the job but you should have direct access to someone who has the technical ability to do the job. This is where the power of synergy comes to play. This will build your business/entrepreneurship profile, expand your horizons, and connect you to key individuals and much more. This should however not stop you from specializing in your area of passion. Be known for something.
- Always procrastinate, throw away integrity and take up a lazy stance: Do not postpone what you can do today to another time. Seize every moment as an opportunity to prospect your business to someone. Opportunities are always hidden in problems; always seek for problems. Integrity pays; give no room for clients to doubt your character or question your integrity even in tight and difficult situation. Integrity is your sure referral. Hard, fast and smart work and consistency never fails a person who is determined to succeed.
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