Most businesses only succeed through a continuous process of trial and error. Basically, there are many things businesses get wrong – without realizing it until it’s too late.
Companies can make all kinds of calculated decisions based on historical data and other information. But, that isn’t a guarantee they’ll achieve their desired results.
While today’s modern businesses spend much of their time determining what is likely to work for their target markets and what will become expensive flops, some of those firms ignore mistakes they make along the way.
Mistakes aren’t always harmful because you can use them as learning and development experiences. It’s only when you’re doing them, and you have no idea they are happening, that potentially catastrophic outcomes might occur.
With those points in mind, I’m here to explain the most common mistakes businesses make and don’t realize they are doing until it’s too late!
As you might know, I started my career working in New York’s top ad and marketing agencies – rising up quickly to Senior VP.
But then I quit in my late twenties (to my parent’s horror) to pursue becoming a (hoped for) bestselling author. Plus I wanted to help people – in a more personal way – as a branding and marketing consultant.
Thankfully, my career plan/dream worked out – and now I love to encourage as many people as I can to pursue careers which are both profitable and fulfilling – which is why I’m sharing these insights on what businesses get wrong.
The following are some of the top examples of mistakes businesses make, so you don’t make them in your organization:
As you should hopefully know by now, businesses of all shapes and sizes, and in all industries and markets, must conduct their operations in a legal and organized manner. The trouble is, some business leaders don’t realize they have serious compliance issues.
Compliance is a very broad term and can apply to most operations in any business. You need to ensure that all your team leaders have relevant compliance training and can prevent your firm from getting fined or shut down because it hasn’t done certain things correctly.
Do your employees seem to go through the motions and seem more concerned with waiting until their shifts are over than doing a good job? Plus, do they lack any genuine enthusiasm for their work? If the answer to both questions is yes, you need to prioritize motivation.
You might have a certain work ethic, but that doesn’t mean everyone you hire will be just like you. Motivation is often the reason for such problems, so you need to discover why your teams feel unmotivated and take actionable steps to resolve the issue.
A business might have excellent products and services, and they might deliver them in the quickest and most efficient ways possible. But, if customers need help and your team is less than willing to help, those customers will vote with their feet and buy elsewhere.
One of the most significant failings of any business, irrespective of its size, is when it delivers poor-quality customer service. Examples of that include:
If you feel that your company’s customer service needs significant improvement, it’s worth looking at why it fails and taking the proper steps to resolve it.
Does your business give customers deadlines for invoice payments but fail to chase them up when they don’t pay? Plus, does your business often have a tight cash flow due to non-paying customers – or because you really should apply for a small business loan?
If the answer to one or both questions is a resounding yes, it’s time you look at ways of improving your slow payment collection processes. Some ideas of how you can transform those processes and improve your cash flow include:
Did you know that one of the biggest reasons customers fail to pay invoices on time is because they might have a low credit score? For example, they may have a history of paying late or not at all, or they might have a history of bankruptcy.
Before you offer credit terms to any customer, you should always conduct thorough credit score checks on them. If they don’t pass those checks, don’t sell to those customers unless they pay invoices upfront with a debit or credit card.
In point two of this article, you read how employees that go through the motions might not feel motivated to do a good job and be passionate about their work. But are you guilty of the same problem as the leader of your business?
A lack of vision will almost certainly hinder the growth of any business, and it’s something that your staff will feel as well. You need to know where you want your business to be in the future and the steps you’re willing to take to get there.
It doesn’t matter that the people you hire to work for you have plenty of skills and relevant experience from previous roles. You still need to provide all new hires with comprehensive training to do their jobs efficiently and according to your standards and processes.
They can use their previous skills and experience to guide them through their daily work. But, they still need to know how you want things done and the goals they must achieve to produce successful outcomes.
You might think that creativity is a discipline that is only useful for specific industries and markets. However, you are wrong because all businesses need creative input, irrespective of the products and services they offer.
Creativity helps businesses grow by introducing new ideas and concepts that will make them work more efficiently and provide ideas for new products and services that their customers will love.
One final point to consider is that an astonishing number of businesses don’t grow or even survive due to the outdated marketing concepts that they use. The marketing landscape is constantly changing, irrespective of whether you’re talking about digital marketing or offline.
Always review the latest marketing trends and concepts because you will often find new ones that will enhance how you attract new customers and grow your brand. Don’t have a narrow field of vision when it comes to marketing ideas.