Podcasts

Focus

Many entrepreneurs’ struggles can be traced to their inability to bring focus to their business. It is said that if you try to be great at everything, you’ll end up being good at nothing. I like to use the example of sunlight to explain the power of focus.

The Power of Focus

Most day our world is full of sunlight and even on the hottest of days there’s little risk of it setting anything on fire. But take that same sunlight and let it pass through a magnifying glass held at just the right angle and within seconds you can create a flame. Then, if properly stoked, it can become a raging inferno. That’s the power of focus and by … Read More

What if you could start all over again?

What if, you could start your business all over again? What would you do differently? What do you like or dislike about your current business? What would you change?

Why Mess With A Good Thing?

These sound like simple questions and that’s because they are. As entrepreneurs, we seem to get ourselves trapped into doing things one way. And why wouldn’t we, if it’s brought us some success? Why mess with a good thing, right? Not necessarily.

One of the problems is that the longer we’re in business, the harder it is to make changes. We’ve managed to survive and maybe even consider ourselves successful or resigned ourselves to the fact that this is as good as it gets, even … Read More

The 1st Million, Is The Hardest

As entrepreneurs, we all set goals. It’s a way to measure our progress. The biggest difference I have found between individuals is the size of the goals. Some people are just more ambitious than others. But the size of ones’ ambition is not a precursor to success.

“Without Goals

We Risk Drifting Aimlessly”

Goals are wonderful, they keep us moving forward. Much like a ships compass, goals give us a heading or a direction in which to sail, even when our destination is over the horizon. Goals give us focus, because without them, we risk drifting aimlessly.

One of the most common goals entrepreneurs have, is a million dollars! It could be a million dollars in sales, a million dollars … Read More

Confidence

When we first hang out our Small Business shingle, we outwardly exude confidence in our idea and our abilities that we will succeed. But if truth be told, we have absolutely no idea how the story will end. Will it be a fairy tale or a horror story?

Mouse in a maze

Throughout the planning stages, we have spent hours upon hours dreaming of the future we will create. We hope that this future will take us on an amazing and positive journey. Realistically though, this journey will not be in a straight line from A to B. It will not be simply a matter of putting one foot in front of another. Often, the entrepreneurial journey is more akin … Read More

Clustering For ProfitProfit, that elusive goal that frustrates many a business owners. To be sure, many businesses are just bad ideas that never should have been started in the first place. However, there are plenty of others that are well run with decent revenues but for some reason they aren’t as profitable as they should be.

 

When helping business owners, one of the first places I look is their pricing model. Other than suggesting some adjustments, their pricing doesn’t appear to be the issue. Take a minute and checkout episode #47 Pricing For Profit for more insight into pricing.

 

A little probing into customers and marketing initiatives often uncovers a flaw in their sales and marketing activities – namely geography! … Read More

Know Your Strengths

Every entrepreneur goes into business with a list of dreams, hopes and desires for their business and their life. Unfortunately, dreams require more than just hoping and praying for a successful outcome.

 

What we need to realize is that dreams are just the starting point of the entrepreneurial adventure. Dreams get us in the game, but to be successful in business requires being able to put all the pieces together in order to create a prosperous enterprise.

 

 

 

Those elements consist of:

Sales
Marketing
Operations
Administration
The thing is, most of us are only really good in one or, if we’re lucky, two of those areas.

Self Assessment

Each of those areas require a wide ranging set … Read More

Pricing For Profit

I’m frequently asked how one goes about pricing their goods and services for profit. It sounds like a simple enough question, but in reality, it can very complex. Get it right and all should be well. Get it wrong and you’ll be constantly chasing revenue, if only to pay the bills.

 

Now if your product is a “me too”, you don’t have a lot of flexibility, as the existing products have already established the pricing parameters and therefore you must compete accordingly. Raising your price becomes almost impossible. The only way to improve your profitability is either to reduce costs or add real value for which your customers are willing to pay a premium.


First Mover Advantage

Moving to … Read More

Far too often I come across entrepreneurs who can’t seem to launch their new business, product, service or even a new strategy. They are constantly tweaking it, in an attempt to make it better or even perfect the final offering.

What they fail to realize is that they’re wasting valuable learning time by not being in the market. Regardless of when they finally do launch, chances are they are going to need to make adjustments anyways once they receive customer feedback, so why wait?

“Far too often I come across smart people who create wonderful solutions for problems that don’t really exist.”

If you have a working prototype or framework for your service, my advice is get to market as … Read More

Small Business Minute #45 Branding vs Reputation

There’s a lot of time and energy wasted by small businesses on the whole concept of brand building and little on reputation. So much of this noise can be traced back to the explosion of Social Media and if the truth be told, that’s all most of it is, noise.

To be honest branding any kind of service business has always been a challenge and is best suited to products. The exception to this is when a service business reaches a size and scope that no longer qualifies it as a small business. The primary factor is that most small businesses have difficulty defining what business they’re actually in and any attempt to develop a brand is a lesson in … Read More

Small Business Minute #44 Want More Sales- Follow Up!

One of the simplest ways to increase your sales closing ratio is by simply following up with your prospects in a timely manner.

All too often I encounter entrepreneurs who lament at how difficult business is or that they just don’t get sales even though they are pitching and quoting.

Digging a little deeper quickly uncovers one of the main reasons for their poor sales performance, they don’t follow up. It is estimated that 85% of sales contacts are never followed up.

When I enquire as to why they don’t follow up, I usually get the same answer- “I don’t want to bother them or come across as pushy’. To this I typically respond by saying “they asked you to … Read More