Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Making the Best Business Decisions When You Are the Only One Making Them

Making the Best Business Decisions When You Are the Only One Making Them
There are more than 22 million businesses solely-owned with no employees, according to the most recent U.S. Census small business data. If you are the only one making the key decisions for your business, then you need access to resources to make it easier to make the right decisions. These tips will give you some direction when you need a little support before making those big decisions.
Your Business Plan is Your Bible
Inc. states a poor business plan is a top reason for an unsuccessful small business. Your business plan is the roadmap you follow to make your business successful. You may be smart and a quick thinker, but you have many things to think about and your plan keeps you on track without worrying about missing something.
A good business plan lets you step back and review the big picture when you get bogged down by the details. It gives the bank and investors a clear picture of your business, where it’s going and how it will get there. It gives future partners a glimpse of your vision. The U.S. Small Business Administration has many resources on how to create a good business plan.
Creating an Honest and Genuine Team
When you begin hiring staff, you may consider doing background checks. This information normally comes from public records, available to you no matter how you retrieve it. There is other information not contained in public records, that you’d like to know before bringing on someone new. Some services will just do the research leg work for you. These resources could save you from making a serious mistake.
How much you can pay will also determine, to some extent, the talent you can recruit. You can research and calculate prevailing wages using various wage calculator tools online.
Capturing Your Business Niche
One of the top reasons a small business fails is the lack of market research, reports Forbes. You believe that you have a product or service that is in demand, but does the public feel the same way? To minimize the risk that you will be going live with a product or service that people really don’t want, you need to gauge the public’s opinion:
  • How important is it to people to solve this problem?
  • What value do people place on the ability to solve this problem?
  • How much would people be willing to pay to have this problem solved?
Let’s say you have a design for a running shoe that you want to market. The lacing on the shoe is off to the side instead of directly on top. You believe this is an easier way to tie shoes and that this design is more comfortable. Your in-depth market research should answer the above questions:
  • How big of a problem do people see with top-lacing running shoes?
  • How important is it to people to have a shoe that ties differently?
  • What is it worth to people to have running shoes that tie on the side?
  • How much would they pay for this design?
If the results show that the majority of people see the same problem and are willing to pay for your solution, then you may have a market winner. If they see this as no big deal, then you may be stuck with a warehouse full of running shoes that people won’t buy.

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