If your child, young pet or garden wasn’t growing…what would you do?
- Hope they started to thrive without YOU making any changes
- Ask yourself, “Am I adequately feeding and hydrating?”
- Consult a pediatrician, veterinarian or expert gardener?
The alphabetized list makes the choices seem obvious. You’d go with C & D and, yet, many business owners often choose A & B hoping for a miracle.
In a public corporation, growth reflects and depends on the knowledge, skills and abilities of others. But growth in your business is 100% under your control. It reflects, to a large degree, the decisions you make and actions you take to generate growth.
6 Keys To Increased Growth
Working with small business owners has taught us that growth is a fairly predictable outcome assuming you utilize six (6) keys that foster it. If, however, you choose to ignore these 6 keys stagnation and decline are likely results.
Here are six (6) keys you can leverage to realize significant growth in your business in 2016:
The ultimate source of energy, leadership and direction for your business
2. Opportunity Pipeline
The quantity and quality of prospects you’re attracting
3. Average Case Size
What someone spends, on average, with you
4. Purchase Frequency
How often someone does business with you
5. Selling Efficiency
How quickly you can help someone make a decision to buy from you
6. Profit Margin
How much of each dollar remains with you after all costs have been covered
Growth . . . Begins With Y-O-U
Your business is alive with the energy you feed it. Growth reflects that you’re feeding yourself and your business well. When your business is easy for clients to consume, and they like it, they want more. Therefore, you need to be well fed and growing to feed your clients well too! If you’re seeing shrinking customers, profit margins, inspiration and support… take care of yourself first. And take it from there.
Failure to thrive in your business may be the first and best indicator that you’re failing to thrive personally. New York Times bestselling author Michael Port—if you haven’t read Book Yourself Solid or Steal the Show, move them to the top of your list —teaches that business problems and personal problems are interchangeable. Ditching the dichotomy between what’s going on in your personal and professional life may be the fastest way for you to accelerate growth in both areas.
A Small Business Growth Success Case Study
One client, the owner of an independent automobile repair facility, asked, “How can I best grow my revenues and profit?”
After learning what he was already doing to do that, he discovered his greatest opportunity for growth would come by focusing on 1 of the 6 keys mentioned above.
To achieve truly significant growth in his business, he focused on growing revenues from each service he offered.
This made sense because he had a decent number of returning customers who were loyal to his business.
We began with one of his smaller offerings: “oil changes”. We started with his facts:
- His customers drive, on average,15,000 miles / year.
- He changes their oil every 5,000 miles.
- He charges $35 for an oil change.
- He performed, on average, 3 oil changes per customer per year.
- Oil changes alone generated $105 from each customer (3 X $35 = $105).
We suggested he advise his customers to change their oil every 3,000 miles rather than every 5,000 miles – a practice that is trending in popularity. As a result, his customers are changing their oil, on average, not 3 but 5 times a year (15,000 miles / 3,000 miles = 5 oil changes).
Without increasing his fees, he’s now generating $175 per customer per year –– 5 oil changes X $35 = $175
Finding a way to increase his customers purchase frequency produced a significant growth – 67% — in revenue for this one line item alone.
Significant improvement in any one area in your business that’s failing to thrive will generate significant growth.
Another Valuable Lesson Learned
At a practice development workshop, the instructor asked, “How many of you want to learn new ideas?”
All of our hands went up.
“How many of you want to learn how to generate more revenues?”
Again, all of our hands went up.
“How many of you believe that learning new ideas will, alone, generate more revenues?
No hands went up!
That instructor taught 2 important lessons. First, there is a direct correlation between the prospects you’re seeing and the revenue you’re generating. Second, to increase revenues, you need to see more people, see ‘better’ people (those that buy more from you).
Ideally, you do both.
The instructor also said, ”If all you learn today is how to see TWICE as many people in the future as you are now, you’ll be making TWICE as much money!”.
Technically that’s true but unlikely. It’s easier said than done. A more realistic path to growth comes from consistent improvement in each of the 6 keys to growth cited above.
Consider this . . . improving each key by only 5% produces a synergistic effect and an overall business growth rate of 28% annually –– as this chart demonstrates:
Growth Made SIMPLE
If you intend to grow your business in 2016, commit to leveraging each of the 6 keys cited above and develop a plan to use them to unlock your business growth potential.
Remember –– modest changes, applied consistently and conscientiously, produce a synergy that will help you grow your business substantially in 2016.
SUMMARY OF KEY POINTS
- Growth of you, personally and your business, financially is necessary for the benefit of both.
- Factors that drive revenues and profit are readily known and 100% under your control.
- Focused, conscientious action can improve any or all of the growth factors cited above.
- A simple 5% improvement in each factor, achieved consistently, generates significant growth
Bill Doerr is a connector who loves to connect clients with good people, great ideas and superb services. He collaborates with other providers in ‘projectships’ that combine “the best of many for the benefit of all”. His firm, SellMore Marketing, LLC, specializes in helping financial advisors build their referrals and revenues so they can afford the lifestyle of their choice. In college, Bill walked wolves (it’s a long story) and is an instrument-rated, private pilot – a capability he’s actually used on several occasions (apparently successfully, too!). He is a certified Duct Tape Marketing consultant and the author of Marketing Insights – a one page, bi-weekly client letter popular with professionals seeking to market their expertise without selling their souls.
Clementina Esposito is a communications developer and the creator and chief of The Clementina Collective. She helps smart, creative professionals communicate who they are so they can get where they want to go. If you’d like to learn more about Clementina, click here to read her blog and subscribe if you like what you see