Being a new business owner is thrilling. It’s also maddening, frightening and exhausting. As you move through this early stage, it can be easy to slip up and take your eye off the ball.
There are a few things that will really make or break any new business, and this is what you and your teams need to focus on every day. Here are three tips to keep in mind as you move forward in building a successful new business.
1. Streamline Everything You Can
Unless your business is incredibly unique, there are probably many sellers or providers similar to you in the market. They are probably bigger than you, too. This means they have the advantages of scale, personnel and resources.
That’s why you need to run lean and mean. You want to cut out anything unnecessary and use modern tools to streamline everything you can. Fortunately, there are so many digital solutions you can utilize. Project management apps like Asana and Trello can work great. Collaboration tools like Slack and Microsoft Teams can make communications much more efficient. And CRMS solutions like Salesforce and Zoho can transform the way you work with customers and clients.
As they say, don’t just work harder — work smarter. Figure out which solutions will work best to keep your business moving smoothly, and always look for ways to keep improving in this area.
2. Value Your Customer Relationships
The other big advantage of being small is your personal touch. Google, for example, isn’t fielding anyone’s call directly. Multinational firms just don’t have the time to spend with each individual customer. You do.
As you’ll find out, some customers actually won’t be worth your time — it’s OK to “fire” a client that isn’t a good fit. For your most valuable customers, however, you need to manage this relationship like your life depends upon it, because it actually might.
Hire talented managers who share this value and empower them to keep your customers happy. If mistakes are made, apologize and fix them immediately. Treat these customers with the care they deserve and always offer service with a smile. Another great option you can consider is to outsource your customer service. There are various contact centers in the Philippines, Malaysia, and China that could help you handle all your customer concerns.
3. Maintain Great Partners & Suppliers
In almost any business, you will have key partners and suppliers that you simply must rely on. That’s why you need to not only find good partners but find ways to manage them well. This is especially true with manufacturers who provide critical parts.
Apple Rubber, for example, is a reliable o-ring manufacturer that makes essential components for many of its customers. It places a huge priority on quality control across its supply chain and embraces concepts including local secondary sourcing and multi-sourcing. By adopting these risk-mitigation strategies, high-impact events — like natural disasters, political unrest or shipping disruptions — in faraway places won’t prevent the company from procuring the critical components it relies on.
What It Takes to Make It as a New Business Owner
Running a new business requires you to juggle countless balls all at the same time. It can feel like an impossible task. What you need is to follow industry and general business best practices with a good strategy.
You also need to keep your focus on the big-picture aspects that truly matter: efficiency through streamlining operations, maintaining amazing customer relationships and partnering with providers and manufacturers who can become part of a strong supply chain.