Has your business felt more optimistic this summer or are trading pressures continuing to shake your confidence? Have you noticed a gradual improvement in collecting and bills being paid on time? Do you feel now is a good time to expand your business or is spending more for maintenance rather than expansion? Are poor sales your number one business problem?
Great Britain’s remarkable success and achievements during the London Olympics this month may have been responsible for producing a feel good factor among the general public but only time will tell whether it has had a positive impact on the confidence of the small business community which had shown evidence of stagnating in early summer.
When it comes to making money in your business, you need to make decisions – whatever the economic position. Businesses need to work even harder to chase the growth opportunities that are out there. But my impression, certainly over the last three months, is that business decision makers have become hesitant, orders are not being placed and local businesses are stagnating.
Our businesses may be profitable, after all, we’ve had several years to make them lean, but without orders, both the lifeblood of the business and the cash flow grinds to a halt. This is currently a major problem as stagnation is the most dangerous challenge we face.
So, if stagnation is a problem what do we do about it? Simply, we all need to go to our target market, current customers, prospective customers, contacts and talk to them! Test ideas and investments and push forward in a positive way. Get out of the temporary culture of hesitation. Forget your reluctance to pick up the phone. Forget discounting prices. Forget doing coffee a lot but not making any sales or investments. It’s about pushing and planning, because failing to have a plan is planning to fail and there are so many good opportunities out there waiting to be exploited.
Don’t wait for the autumn!
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