October 26, 2015
Running a business is a full out assault. You hit the ground running on the day you start your business and you don’t stop. Over time your company grows up and how you manage it needs to change. There are more people, more money, more expenses and more demands on your time. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and overlook some critical elements of success.
10 common management mistakes you need to avoid as your company grows.
Lack of Focus: Lack of focus will kill your business. I see so many people running around chasing any dollar they can get and waisting valuable time and resources in the process. Know yourself and what you do. Understand your business and target the best opportunities. Focus on what will make your business the MOST successful not just what will keep the lights on.
Not Being Strategic: If you truly know your business and are serving customers you can survive and thrive in any economic conditions. However, as your company grows you need to manage more strategically rather than from your gut. I know that it is a pain but a strong SWOT analysis can give you insights into your company and market that you may never have thought of. You may see opportunities that are more attractive than your current market and may dictate a change in direction.
October 15, 2015
You’re ready to start your first business. You have probably thought of a million things you need to do to open the business but unless you have been there before there are five things you won’t know that will trip you up.
Everything Costs More Than You Expected ~ You have probably been working on a business a plan that includes forecasts for revenue and expenses. It looks great and you can clearly make this work. Probably not. Most first time entrepreneurs under forecast their expenses and over project their revenue. When you are projecting expenses multiply what you have put in your initial plan by three to five times to get a realistic idea of what your expenses will be. Are your revenue projections still covering expenses? If not you need to do some more prep work.
April 10, 2015
I recently had the opportunity to serve as a judge for the IdeaBox competition presented by the Business Builders Club at The Ohio State University. This was a fresh take on the typical student pitch competition. The students set up displays for their businesses so the judges and other students could walk around to meet the entrepreneurs and discuss the ideas. It was billed as “The science fair for start-ups!”. It was pretty cool and I enjoyed being a part of it.
The businesses exhibiting ranged from the idea that was hatched a couple days earlier to businesses very close to entering the market with a beta product. There were simple consumer products as well as complex technical products. They all needed work but they all had something that could be developed.
March 11, 2015
I’m swamped with work. My to-do list is out of control and I’m so far from inbox zero that I have given up. I look at my calendar and realize the weekly staff meeting is in 10 minutes so I grab a pad of paper and head to the conference room. Surely this won’t take an hour even though that is how long it is scheduled to last. OK, here comes the boss (late as usual). Let’s get going so we can get out of here. Wait, where is the agenda? I hope this doesn’t mean…”Let’s go around and everyone give an update on that they are working on”. Oh Shit here it comes.
To be clear, I hate meetings. Unfortunately in my job I have to go to a lot of meetings. One-on-one meetings, group meetings, phone meetings, online meetings, whatever the meeting type I’ve been there. You might be thinking that meetings aren’t all that bad, sorry you are wrong. My perception of hell is a never ending meeting with the attendees updating everyone on their projects or what they did over the weekend, both suck.
March 5, 2015
“Three measures of Gordon’s; one of vodka; half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it over ice, and add a thin slice of lemon peel.”
~ James Bond, Casino Royale
Yes, today is my birthday. As much as I don’t like getting older it is better than the alternative. I haven’t been this excited for a birthday in awhile. There is nothing special going on, it’s a Thursday after all. What excites me is that last year is over. Yeah, last year pretty much sucked but I survived.
This year will be better. There are a number of opportunities ahead and this has me re-energized. I’ve reset the blog. I’ve replaced my hip and can move without pain. My wife and kids are healthy and there is a new Bond movie coming out in November. Optimism abounds.
James Bond: “In your defense, a moving target is harder to hit.”
Moneypenny: “Then you better keep moving.”
Good advice, let’s keep moving!