Don’t let pessimism keep your company from being all it can be.
Jared, one of the brothers in a fairly large, 100% family-owned manufacturing company came to me worried that the family business wouldn’t survive without expanding. His 3 brothers, uncle, and father wanted to stay local. I agreed to meet with the team. I quickly heard that it wasn’t that they didn’t want to expand… it was more that they saw limitations everywhere. Among their gloomy comments:
- “Their employees couldn’t handle higher volumes… they already made enough mistakes with current volume.”
- “Their marketing person has enough trouble getting the business they had, let alone trying to get more.”
- “The market was probably saturated with 3 manufacturers who produced the same product.”
The members of this family business had tried to grow their business—several times. They didn’t want to invest in capacity-building and marketing again just to see nothing come of it. Over the years, they settled for maintenance mode and lost sight of what their business’ potential could be.
These business owners needed something to inspire them
If they didn’t get inspired soon, it was fairly certain their company wouldn’t be around in 5-10 years, let alone making a profit.
Small business planning gave them hope
We took a simple small business planning template and proceeded to walk through the process of completing the plan, including:
- Doing a SWOT analysis,
- Creating their WHY and their vision,
- Projecting out 10, 20, and 30 years to what they wanted to HAVE, BE, and DO, and
- Identifying high-level, step-by-step actions quarterly, monthly, and weekly to get there.
The planning process caused them to look at the potential and they got excited. Jared found a way to help his brothers be comfortable with the growth. They could see where they were going laid out on paper. Plus they could see the steps it would take to enable expansion also laid out on the same piece of paper.
They committed to a 30-day trial and started small. They identified a new target market. They invested in a small amount of marketing to that target audience, got a couple new accounts, and invested more. As the new accounts grew they executed on the employee development action steps they’d created. They trained employees, created a hiring plan and eventually added people.
Lastly they issued a moratorium on pessimism. No one was allowed to say negative things. At each meeting they practiced citing things that were going right. If they had constructive criticism, they included a solution as part of their comment. Begin to push the envelope. Ask what if we did these. Give it a good college try.
Small business planning caused them to look at the company’s potential and they got excited
Small business planning caused Jared and his team to find a way forward. It inspired them to see what was possible. And it gave them confidence—confidence based on research, multiple perspectives and inputs, and step-by-step action steps. Today, morale is high and growth is steady and strong.
Small business planning costs very little to create in terms of your time or your money. How can you afford not to create a business plan for your business?
I’d like to help you create one. Join us at my quarterly small business plan workshop in central Indiana. Business owners come together and provide outsider perspectives to help each other complete their 1-Page Strategic Plans [insert link] and 90-Day Action Plans.
Register for the first quarter’s Growth Plan Business Planning Workshop here.
Thur., Jan. 7, 2016, 9 – 4 pm
Hilton Garden Inn Indianapolis Airport, 8910 Hatfield Dr., Indianapolis 46231
You’ll walk away with:
- A clear picture of where you want your business to be in 10-30 years, a 3-5 year plan, a 90-day plan, & monthly goals broken into weekly actions
- Your 12-month goals broken into bite-size quarterly goals, monthly milestones, & weekly actions
- Strategies to build your profits right away
- Renewed optimism
Roger Engelau, Business Coach to Business Owners in Every Industry
P.S. Secure your seat now for The Growth Plan Workshop and get over half off the normal price. Click here to register