Benchmark Business Group

Business Owner Newsletter - Page 25

Whiteboard Notebooks

Every so often we come across a simple idea, tool or resource that we just have to share with our clients. As business owners, we know that you've got a lot on your plate and can always use ideas and tools to help stay organized. This week we've got two words for you: Whiteboard Notebooks.

 

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Are You Connected?

At the beginning of this month, we discussed getting unstuck from your organizational chart and looking at your business from a strategic point of view.   In order to lead from a strategic point of view, you must know where your business is headed.  As a business owner, you've probably been told that you need to have a clear vision.  In fact, many of you probably have a written vision statement....somewhere.


Having a vision statement is simply the first step.  If your vision statement lives in a drawer, a dusty old binder, or even an unused electronic file, then you you might as well not have it.  A vision, is only as good as its use.  In order to truly lead from a strategic point of view, you have to make sure that your employees connected to your vision, starting today.  Here are three questions you should ask about how well everyone in your company is connected to your vision:

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Velcro Leadership: Getting Unstuck

Chances are as a business owner you're filling multiple roles on your organizational chart. In some cases, you are the CEO, the CFO, the salesperson and perhaps sometimes the technician. Every day you're focused on balancing your time and efforts, but often what isn't as balanced is your point of view. When you spend so much time filling operational roles in your business, it can be easy to view your business from those roles and not the role of an entrepreneur.   

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We Have a Question

Quote: "A little thought and a little kindness are often worth more than a great deal of money." - John Ruskin

 

Question: How might a little thought and a little kindness help you to develop a collections system that is based on building the customer experience, not damaging it?

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Clarify Clear Terms Now!

Last week we began a series on collections, a vital part of your customer service. This is often a overlooked process for keeping and building customer relationships.

 

You may be thinking: "What?! Collections are vital to keeping and building customer relationships? Are you crazy? The reason I have to "collect" from them is because they have not paid me when they were supposed to --- why would I want to keep and build that relationship?!" Simply put, you want to build these relationships, because they have already done business with you and because they do owe you money.

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Close the Sale

It has been said that a sale is not truly a sale until you have collected the money. With this "truth" as a basis, your collection system is one of the most important systems your business needs to have and use.  
 

Cash flow in your business is vital to your success. If you operate your payment terms as cash at the time of service, collecting money may not be much of an issue for your business. If your business, like many in today's business world, extends credit to those that use their goods and/or services, collecting money may be more of an issue.

 

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Get Started Now!

This month we've challenged your business to create a system a month and discussed different types of systems. If you're like most business owners, this might still seem a little daunting. Where are you going to find create time to document a system a month? The good news is you don't have to, your business does. Getting staff involved in the systemization of your business is something that should happen as soon as you are comfortable with the process.   

   

Staff involvement takes some training and thus time, but the investment is worth the time. When your staff is involved in systems they have ownership in not just creating the systems, but in using them on a day to day basis. In addition, dedicating more resources to the process allows the business to realize the impact of systems earlier than if you try to do it all yourself.   Also if you look at the value of your time as a business owner, typing up a system is not the best use of your time. Your attention needs to be on the strategic planning and the vision of the systems, not on the technical details.   Here are four tips to get your staff started in system design:  

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