Thursday, February 24, 2005

WARNING: How your business is plotting to overthrow you.

How to Make More Money with Less Time and Effort
by David Krock, President, Krock Business Development
Copyright (C) 2005 All Rights Reserved.

You find yourself in your office at 11pm on a Friday night, desperately trying to locate a customer's file, so you can type up an invoice, because you need to get paid for the work you did for them, because you don't want to go to jail for bouncing payroll checks.

Seems like a simple lack of organization, doesn't it? As we take a closer look, it becomes obvious that there's a deeper issue here.

When you first start a business, oftentimes it takes everything you've got, emotionally, mentally, and physically to get it started. You've got to get those key first customers, and you've got to serve them well.

At the same time, unless you've bought a franchise, you've got to put some things in place to help you run the show. You need a way to keep track of whom you need to serve, bill them for the services, collect on the bills, and account for the books. You also know you need marketing materials to attract new customers like bees to honey, ways for them to learn about your company, and ways for them to reach you, to sign up, request more info, etc.

Once you start to grow, and the laws of physics prevent you from handling all of your new customers at once, never mind having to manage the business side of things, you begin to realize you need help. You need an employee.

By this point, unless you document your every thought, you've probably lost the grip on the finer points of your business, like what happens where, who handles it, at what time, for how long, and all that jazz.

All the while, your customers are expecting solid performance from you. Will they care if you weren't able to get them served because you needed to be at the office when the GeekSquad needed to come put out your smoldering hard drive? Not likely.

Welcome to the wall most entrepreneurs almost inevitably hit:

The "Your Business Is Running You"
Success-Proof, Titanium Barrier

Congratulations! You've arrived. You're a grizzled veteran.

Ok, not really. You're frustrated. You're brain-fried. You can't take a day off without your entire business screeching to a profitless halt. You've reached the point where most of the 90% of businesses that fail, do.

How Do "The Other 10%" Survive?

First off, realize that you're already doing what you need to do to solve the problem.


Yep. You're already doing what you need to do to solve the problem.

Let me explain.

Every morning when you wake up, what do you do first? Shower? Grab coffee? Go to the bathroom?

When you get dressed, which sock do you put on first?

Studies have shown that people generally follow the exact same routine EVERY morning!

They do things in a specific order. Whether by careful design or aimless ambling, people do things the same way. They have a system.

sys┬Ětem (sstm) A repeated way of doing something.

In your business life, you probably have dozens of systems, even hundreds of systems. Most of them, you aren't conscious of. The way you answer the phone. The way you store your electronic documents. The way you pitch your business to prospective clients. The customer database you use. And on and on.

All systems.

The businesses that succeed are the businesses that examine the reality of their systems. They ask themselves whether what they do works. They seek better ways of doing things, ways that allow them to gain more customers. Ways that allow them to better serve the world. Ways that allow them to leverage other business' and people's time and effort.

Krock's Key: Business is a team sport.

Remember that the next time you find yourself wondering why you eat cereal in your underwear.


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