O.C. Tanner, featured on the 2016 FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® list. We help organisations create great work environments by inspiring and appreciating great work. Thousands of clients globally use the company’s cloud-based technology, strategy & design services, mobile application, awards, employee communication and education services to engage talent, increase performance, drive goals, and create experiences that fuel the human spirit. Visit: www.octanner.com/in
Every successful businessman will tell you that there is no single way to succeed. It is work-in-progress that has to be a combination of passion, strength, and vision that fused with a perfect plan has to be mastered and altered to find just the right combination that leads one to success.
Building a new business does not need to have the right place, time and situations to prosper. You do not have to have it all together to take the plunge. All it takes is conviction to take the risk, which shall make building the business exciting, worthwhile and rewarding, and pick up rest as you move along.
Remember, there will never be a right time to start a business, as all the lights will never go green together. You need to trust your guts to take the plunge and believe in it.
Research your market and get a clear understanding of where you want to go and why. Setting tangible business and financial goals always help. Zeroing in on one problem that you can solve better than others will give you a great start point. Right vision, values, and sense of purpose are foundations that shall drive you towards building a great business. Start with yourself, and percolate these to the team to create a synchronised organisational culture that is unique to you and your business. Finally, assess the world outside. That is the playing field that you will have to compete for day-in and out. The target market, competition and other influences that could and would affect the business need to be properly mapped and solutions for them need to be built up in advance.
Build the right team
Get the right team that is diverse enough to get ideas from different experience and thought processes, and are diverse enough to have the right skills, knowledge, and creativity as needed by the business model. Ensuring that the team is aligned to purpose, display great leadership and are “Proud to Work” for a successful organisation, the business needs to sustain them with long-term involvement and distraction from market forces. If need be, lure them with an attractive carrot at the end of the tunnel
Diversification, flexibility and not waiting for perfection
Many businesses throttle their growth by limiting opportunities or methods of achieving that elusive success, which creates issues to keep it going. Best is to keep testing the concept and be flexible with customer feedback all along the process. Think long-term and build on small successes to start with. Small success allows you to learn, act as referrals and makes it easier to execute with your lean team. If need be, leverage existing brand names, relationships, and successful companies. Build partnerships for distribution, awareness and other means to share cost or leverage market success. Today’s business methods demand not just out-of-the-box thinking, but going out and unpacking the box itself. Do it, just right, and success will be yours.
Celebrate and enjoy every progress
Talk about and celebrate every progress even if it is all about getting a new office coffee machine or even a positive comment from a prospect. Every small celebration creates a habit of positivity and encourages the team to be happy and celebrate each other. If you have global teams then get them to pep talk the team and provide encouragement. You can also get external colleagues and known successful friends to come and address the team and share success stories.
Invest the business monies in product development or sales, with the long-term in mind and making a long-term commitment. Everything else could be tactical, a solution that needs to be assessed periodically. There is no better way to increase brand awareness without having the new marketing mediums working for you, as hard as you work for your business.
Lesser headcount investments and limited expenses will give you bigger money pool that you could put to better investments. Remember every penny saved is a penny earned, and nothing better than knowing what to spend on and what to invest.
Building a successful business needs dreams that are big, but steps which are small. The tenacity of purpose here plays a very important role in shaping the future of the business and it needs to be followed to the T. Remember, it is always the start that requires the greatest effort, and you need to be prepared for it.
Zubin Zack, the author, is the managing director for O.C. Tanner – Global Employee Recognition and Engagement Company.
The thoughts and opinions shared here are of the author.
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