–In business, activity is not movement
In the next few weeks, I am going to be writing on what I like to tag ‘reality business school’ which is targeted at people who have a side or full time business.
I had a sense of remorse after I dropped the call with my very good friend and advisor. She had just ‘hit’ me with a virtual bat to bring me back to reality. I was off on a tandem enlightening her about the flurry of activities I was engaged in to get things operational in my business coaching practice and she asked me a question: which of these activities would bring in the money? I mumbled a response and tried to defend myself that I had to get it ‘right’. And I stand by the assertion to always try to get things right, but I see a lot of business owners going round in cycles focused on activities that might not bring in any money.
Newly repentant, I now have a new mantra; ‘focus on money making activities’ and here are some reasons why you should adopt my mantra:
1. You can ‘never’ have a perfect product/service from the start: no matter how much preparation you make or how much time you take to try to make your operations perfect, you won’t get it perfectly from the start. Instead focus on releasing a good enough product, selling it to people close to you and making changes along the way before you release it to a bigger market. Even bigger companies are constantly improving their products and services.
2. You need customer feedback to improve: my business partner and I are currently working on a platform and we did some market testing recently and our eyes were immediately opened to changes we had to make to our platform to make it more user-friendly. If we had stayed in our little world and assumed we had a great product, we would not have received needed feedback to improve early and make a better product. This is known as iteration in technology parlance and it would do you a lot of good before you have a lot of customers using your product and services and complaining.
3. You need money to run your operations: if you spend too much time on non-making activities, you run the risk of running out of money! Especially if you don’t have an endless pool of capital. And this would put you under more pressure and even stall your operations. Start generating money and you would have more money to improve. The more money you are making the more changes you can make in your business.
4. You need to sell to get better at selling: I have worked in sales for over 8 years, so I can tell you confidently; you need to sell to get better at selling! If you are not going out to sell your products and services, you won’t learn what sells, how to position your products in the minds of the customers and what you need to do to bring in the money fast.
5. Do it afraid: when I speak to business owners, I sometimes sense an inherent fear to move ahead with a project or product because of fear of failure, rejection or lack of acceptance from customers. The way forward is to do it afraid and have faith that like John Maxwell says; if you don’t win, you would learn from the experience.
Make that your mantra for the week and if you are serious about getting the skills to make money, check this bootcamp out here. I also have a free ebook on 5 reasons small businesses don’t grow on the page.