Just because your small business is on the brink of going under doesn’t mean all is lost. There are effective ways to turnaround a sinking ship, and all it may take is a different mindset. Before you raise the white flag consider these four strategies from author and host of National Geographic Channel’s “Turnaround King” Grant Cardone.
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Revenue Is King During the last few years many small businesses were in survival mode, which means they were cutting costs and laying off workers to stay afloat. The idea was to hang on until the economy righted itself. But, according to Cardone, that strategy only delays the inevitable.
“People were waiting for the economy to rebound and were taking the attention off what they can do,” says Cardone. “Now they have to shift their attention to generating revenue.” And it’s not just the sales force at the company that has to get into revenue generating mode. In order for a struggling business to survive, he says everyone has to be focused on making the company money -- from the receptionist all the way up to the CEO.
According to Cardone the new economy is all about people doing more than just their job. That means everyone in the company would be in charge of finding someone interested in the product or service, he says. “Everybody has a new measurement. It’s not their job to develop the website or answer phones anymore they also have to start feeding the sales department opportunities,” says Cardone. “There’s a reason why revenue is the top line in the financial statement but everybody forgets that.”
Don’t Discount Your Product or Service When sales are down, a typical knee jerk reaction is to sell your product or service on the cheap, hoping you’ll make it up in volume. But Cardone says that’s a big mistake. Chances are you aren’t going to sell a lot of whatever you are hawking, which is why keeping the price stable is important, says Cardone.
“In economic contractions people are no longer buying price they are buying value,” he says. “Am I going to use this product, is it necessary, will it last a long time. If it’s valuable they will buy it.” Cardone sells a training program, but when the economic contraction hit no one could travel to Cardone’s school so he created a program that people can use at home. He was able to create a valuable product without having to slash the price.
Fill Up the Pipeline Small business owners may meet three prospective customers a week, or network twice a week, which is all well and good in prosperous times. But in a bad economy or if your company is in peril, Cardone says you need to exceed the norm and exceed it big time.
“You have to think in terms of ten times the activity,” says Cardone. “You no longer want one appointment you need to become omnipresent.” According to Cardone, the small businesses that turn themselves around or those that are willing to work and fight for new revenue all the time. “Your complete focus is who is in the pipeline today, who am I calling on today,” he says.
Dominate the Sector Whether you are a personal trainer or run a web development company, in order to turn the business around you and your company has to dominate the sector, according to Cardone. That means your name and your business has to be everywhere there may be a potential customer or business opportunity. According to Cardone, if you are everywhere then when it comes time for someone to buy a product or service in your industry you’ll be center in their mind.
“You have to go into Kim Kardashian mode,” says Cardone. “You have to get to the place where you are everywhere.”