The essential thing to know about going through a dip in your business is that your business will at some point sooner or later go through a dip, a dip in business is there. Knowing that you are facing a dip is the first step in getting through it.
Before you can focus on coming up with turnaround and growth strategies, you need to understand the exact state of your business right now. Why? Because there will be areas of your business that you have not paid attention to in as much detail as you should have (you know what they are!).
We are all guilty of that to some degree. Either because it’s not our area of expertise, or we don’t think it’s that important, or we just really don’t like doing it. Whatever the reason, you have got to get a clear picture of exactly what’s been going on to see whether there is anything internally that’s been contributing to the state of your business being on survival mode.
Here is how you can get started. First, you will want to look internally at what’s been happening and why. Start by asking yourself a few probing questions:
- What is the vision I have for my business in the next 1-3 years?
- Is my staff performing at its best and are they happy?
- Do I have enough people to support any future growth?
- Is customer service as excellent as it could be, and if not, why not?
You will also want to figure out what the biggest contributing external factors have been to you getting where you are.
- Did the market needs change substantially?
- Is the economy going through a recession?
- Do you now have more competition in the industry?
- Do you know how your business compares to other small businesses in your industry?
- Are you charging what you are worth?
These are the difficult questions that needs honest assessment. People who skip the hard questions are in the majority, but they are not in demand.
The people who are the best in the world specialise at getting really good at the questions they don’t know.
Be sure to invest the time into this work and get as clear of a picture as possible. This is your base, the platform for your jump out of survival mode and into growth and profitability.
This assessment needs to be solid. And it needs to be honest. Work with your mentor or coach to make sure you are not overlooking any areas. Once you complete this process, you will be surprised how much insight you will get from it. You will see it much clearer and you will feel much better about it.
To be a superstar, you must do something exceptional. Not just survive the dip and come out of survival mentality, but use the dip as an opportunity to create something so extraordinary that people can’t help but talk about it, recommend it, and, yes, choose it.