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life cycle of a business

The Life Cycle of a Business

Today I’m going to talk about the life cycle of a business and how to get the most out of each cycle while also extended the lifespan of your business.

The four different stages of a business life cycle are:

  • Infancy
  • Adolescence
  • Growing Pains
  • Maturity

We’ll talk a little about what each of these cycle’s means and how they can each help expand your business’ lifespan.

Infancy

This is generally consider the technician’s phase, which is the owner. At this point, the relationship between the business and the owner is that of a parent and new baby. There is an impenetrable bond that is necessary to determine the path your business will follow.

The key is to know your business must grow in order to flourish. You cannot stage in this stage forever.

Adolescence

In this stage you need to start bringing your support staff together to delegate to and allow growth to happen. The first line of defense is your technical person as they need to bring a certain level of technical experience. This cycle really belongs to the manager though. The plan stage needs to start and a relationship should be built with the entrepreneur to plan for the future.

Growing Pains

There’s a point in every business when business explodes and becomes chaotic. This is referred to as growing pains. It’s a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless. You are often faced with a number of choices:

  • Avoid growth and stay small
  • Go broke
  • Push forward into the next cycle

Maturity

The last cycle is maturity, though this doesn’t mean the end of your business. Your passion for growth must continue in order for your business to succeed. You need to keep an entrepreneurial perspective in order to push your business forward.

You see how all three of these cycles are connected and depend on a strong foundation for each one of them for your business to be and continue to be successful. All three of your key roles must also work together to work through the life cycle of a business.

If you’re having trouble putting together your business life cycles and figuring out which of the key roles you fit into, please contact us and work with one of our coaches!


target marketing resources

Stop Wasting Your Resources!

How can you best manage your resources?

Today you’re going to learn how to find a target market of potential customers so you aren’t wasting precious resources on blitz marketing. So, the two questions you have to ask yourself are:

  • What do people really want to buy from me?
  • What related products are they already buying?

Once you figure this out you will know who is more predisposed to purchase your products/services. Then, you find other businesses with the same customer base who you can customer share with. Come up with an incentive and great arrangement to encourage both of your customer bases to shop at both of your stores.

The basic concept is this:

You want to find existing businesses who have the customer profile that you are looking for to market your products/services to.

Then strike up a relationship with those business owners to work out an incentive for customers to purchase from both businesses.

As a result, you have an audience to market to and they generate an added value from their current base.

So, how do you figure this out? There is a great formula from Jay Abraham you can follow with great success.

LV = (P x F) x N – MC

Here’s what it all means:

  • LV is the life time value of a customer
  • P is the average profit margin from each sale
  • F is the number of times a customer buys each year
  • N is the number of years customers stay with you
  • MC is the marketing cost per customer (total costs/number of customers)

Once you know how much you need to spend to attract a new customer, you will know how much of an incentive you can offer to a business to help attract new customers.

So, here’s your step-by-step process:

  1. Find companies who already have the customer base you are looking for.
  2. Negotiate an incentive for them to share that customer base with you.

Focus your marketing resources to this group of predisposed customers.


10 Tips That Boost Productivity

Running a small business calls for a person who can wear many hats throughout the day. Not only are you managing day-to-day operations, but you’re in charge of long-term strategies and being the gatekeeper of your brand. The constant hustle can make it seem like there aren’t enough hours in the day. Organizing and prioritizing are a necessity, and entrepreneurs across the board say these 10 things will help keep you productive.

1. Define a Clear Objective for Your Day

Of course as a small business owner you will be tackling several tasks each day, but going in with the mindset of “Today I will…” can provide focus and places emphasis on the certain thing you feel is most important. Each night follow up your statement with “Today, I accomplished…” and fill in the blank. This technique will keep you on the path of realizing your ultimate goals as a business owner, and make certain that those tasks will be completed.

2. Create a Schedule for Each Day

One of the common pitfalls is taking on the quickest, easiest tasks first. By the time you’ve finished three or four “quick” things, they’ve added up and taken a lot of time away from the bigger, more daunting tasks. Doing this causes the more challenging objectives to become rushed and potentially lose quality. Maintaining a consistent schedule eliminates this by forcing you to really pay attention to how much time you spend on each project, down to the hour. An added bonus is that allotting time to each task helps with prioritizing.

3. Write it Down

Physical checklists give you a real representation of your workload, and the reward of crossing off each item motivates you to start on the next. Sometimes just having an organized visual helps focus, rather trying to mentally keep track of your day.

4. Prioritize for the Unexpected

Every day something will come up, it can be a huge, pressing issue or something small. Both will affect your day-to-day in different ways. Be sure to know which tasks on your list can be pushed back to tomorrow and which can’t and adjust accordingly.

5. Don’t Let Email Rule Your Day

You have your phone number in your signature for a reason. If there is a pressing issue that needs immediate attention, there will be a way to reach you. Leaving your email open is a potential for constant distraction on your screen. Checking your email at regular intervals throughout the day eliminates this, and ensures an email doesn’t interrupt something much more important.

6. Give Your Mind a Break from Business

If you focus on your business 24/7 it won’t be long before you’re completely burnt out. Have something else you’re doing to give your mind time to relax and recharge. For some this could be a hobby or projects around the house, figure out what that one thing is for you.

7. Get Rid of the Clutter

It may be a sign of a creative mind, but it also detracts from productivity and increases stress. Figure out what needs to be physical and what you can keep digitally, a scanner aids in the process tremendously. What you do need in physical form should be kept neatly and organized.

8. Don’t Live in Your Conference Room

You should always have open communication with your clients, buyers, partners, etc. Think about when you should have a formal meeting, and when a phone call in another room will suffice. Staying out of the conference room keeps you available to complete other tasks.

9. Stay Positive and Try to Have Fun

You own your business, and even in the most stressful of times, it is important to think of the benefits. You dress how you want to, you don’t have to work for a shady boss, and you don’t have to worry about job security. Getting angry or upset distracts from focus and can lead to shoddy work. Be serious about your objectives but try to complete them in a way that is fun; being eternally somber can lead to burning out and can hugely take away from productivity.

10. Learn to Grow from Failure

There will always be some sort of trial and error is business. Figuring out what doesn’t work is the first step towards finding out what does. Don’t harp on something that didn’t go exactly as planned, some things don’t work and that is OK. Learn to apply that lesson to future strategies. Forward thinking each day is key for staying productive.


5 Tips For Making The Most Out Of Your Time & Money

As a small business owner, your occupation is important to you. But should the health of your business take precedence over your health and personal happiness?

Nearly 4 in 10 small business owners are working more hours per week than they were five years ago, thanks in part to a culture of connectivity. Smart phones enable us to communicate from nearly anywhere, and modern business protocol dictates that we respond promptly to inquiries and messages. Employees are in contact over the weekends, and customers are only a click away via social media.

So, when exactly does one draw the line between personal and professional lives? The answer to finding a successful balance, experts say, is picking your priorities and sticking with them. Establishing boundaries and building a schedule that allows for both work and personal life is crucial to avoiding burnout and maintaining relationships with friends and family.

As one entrepreneur puts it, “Figure out what is most important, and say no to everything else.”

Here are five tips for making the most out of your time – and money.

1. Keep a daily calendar – around the clock

Your business hours may be 9-5, but often the real work gets done after hours. Utilize a personal planner to schedule all of your tasks, even in the evenings. By being mindful of your calendar, you can more easily shift your responsibilities into another time slot if something pressing pops up.

2. Welcome to the machine

We may not have robot butlers to perform our daily tasks … just yet. But you can automate many tasks such as accounting, invoicing and paying bills just by using technology. A host of great apps and software programs are available to increase efficiency and help you make money. Check out www.waveapps.com to explore the world of automation apps and business performance software.

3. Get creative with eating, sleep and exercise

For your body to perform at its peak, there are some things you can’t skip. But with employees to manage, clients to handle and bills to pay, it’s tough to find the time. That’s when it’s necessary to get especially clever. Do what it takes to look after your health, whether that’s scheduling a 15 to 20 minute power nap after lunch, exercising on your lunch break, or negotiating a service exchange with a local healthy eatery.

4. It’s your business. Not your entire life.

There comes a time when being too connected can be a bad thing. To help avoid burnout, to set aside “offline” time to recharge your batteries and generate new ideas. Finding time for fulfilling, peaceful activities such as a walk in the woods or a spa session has been shown to have a considerable effect on your emotional and mental balance.

5. – No regrets, No reservations.

It’s easy to focus on how little time you have … instead of making the most of the time you’ve got. Ensure that your time with family and friends is well spent by preparing potluck dinners, participating in organized sports or planning fun outings.


Meet Greg A. Lee & Associates

Greg A. Lee & Associates focuses on coaching business leaders by improving their performance and boosting effectiveness.


What Is Our Commitment To AdviCoach?

The AdviCoach approach was designed to rescue the dream of business ownership and help business owners attain maximum success. We work with AdviCoach because it’s the leading small business coaching company in the U.S. and even the world.

Greg A. Lee & Associates focuses on coaching business leaders by improving their performance and boosting effectiveness.


Rapid Impact Strategies To Propel Your Business

While all business owners face unique situations, most challenges they face are common and cut across all industries. Our Rapid Impact Strategies specifically address the Top 5 Business Dangers with cost effective strategies designed to drive immediate results and improve the bottom line.

Greg A. Lee & Associates focuses on coaching business leaders by improving their performance and boosting effectiveness.


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