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Edition 319 – Snippets Of Success

We’re through the first quarter of the calendar year. Easter is knocking on the door and we’re not too far off the end of the financial year. It’s a good time to reflect on what I’ve observed is working in small and family businesses in 2022, to date:

  1. Culture is king! You can feel it when you walk into a business. If the staff are happy, engaged and productive, then something is right on the culture front. Your people want to be there.
  2. Flexibility is key to the retention of existing and the employment of new staff. Rather than stick with the old 8 hours per day, 5 days per week methodology, some businesses are offering an alternative to their staff, who may have child minding or aged parent caring issues they’re dealing with.
  3. Staying on top of who owes you money, not just consistently, but persistently, is boosting cashflow in those businesses that are doing it.
  4. Firmly articulating your availability to start a project is locking in commitments from clients. It’s also saving businesses from losing control of their work programme and the subsequent overwork and stress that follows.
  5. Reviewing systems and processes and, where necessary, carving days out in the diary to integrate change is not only leading to improvement, it’s also opening up conversations about issues that no one had thought of to that point.
  6. Where owners and employers have taken time out, it’s freshening people up, clearing a leave debt and giving people the opportunity to be away from the business and home – which, let’s face it, is where most people have spent the past few years.
  7. Businesses that are talking to their banks about their business plans is leading to unexpected and positive bonuses – like better interest rates and increased credit limits.
  8. Those that are reviewing their numbers, daily, are generating better numbers – and being more analytical around why the numbers are the way they are.
  9. Organisations and individuals that have moved beyond COVID, war and natural disasters and accept that turmoil is merely a part of life are proving more resilient and less impacted by the next big event.
  10. Businesses that are building alternate supplier relationships are not only leveraging risk from a supply chain perspective, but finding that the quality of solutions being provided is improved.
  11. Those that are clear on their future direction are making client and project selections based on what’s in their “sweet spot”. That means the work is profitable, enjoyable and repeatable.

Different businesses. Different observations.  Almost all with the same impact in their financial results – better than budgeted, better than last year, or both.

Sure, there are businesses that are doing some, but not all of the above. That’s OK. It means they’re making progress, ingraining change and building momentum around operational and strategic improvement. Once an element of their business operations that has changed becomes a part of the fabric of the business, successful owners that think like entrepreneurs will move onto the next series of challenges. Food for thought as you commence to bury yourself into the next quarter in business.

This Week’s Tip

“To make a substantive and definitive improvement in your family business,
it comes down to thinking and acting like an Entrepreneur
– not a Manager or a Technician.”