by Joel Freimuth, CEO of Blue Pearl Consulting
The plate of any business owner, whether the company is large or small is full and often overflowing. With a mind that must sift through all of the clutter rapidly, there are many important aspects that tend to fall by the wayside. The problem is that most successful people are aware of these neglected necessities, however they just do not place enough conscious attention on them.
To be in a position of power in a company, there is so much investment, not just financially, but through effort and emotion. The everyday grind of running such an operation can easily force a loss of focus on some of the things that are of the utmost importance to company growth.
Here are five of the most glaring aspects of operating a business that leadership loses sight of:
The first thing anyone starting a business must conceive is their brand. Knowing exactly what identity the company is going to take on is the jump off point. Too often, this initial vision becomes lost somewhere along the line. While a business plan and new goals are a continuous work in progress and have an innate flexibility, there must be alignment with oneself and the commitment that was initially made to the consumer.
Having a recognizable brand is not simply a necessity for big names like Coke or Pepsi, but any business. While the reach of smaller businesses may not extend globally, what truly matters is building a connection with the audience, no matter the breadth. Successful branding is consistent in its imagery across all platforms, as consumers have a deep connection with the who/what/how behind the brand.
All companies wish to expand their reach. Many of them even know how to increase their growth potential. However, networking becomes a chore and can very easily slip behind seemingly more productive tasks. By its very nature, networking does not often produce immediate results and this lack of instant gratification can be disheartening.
When one is looking for long term positive results, cultivating relationships via networking events and groups is second to none. The old adage, ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know’ came about for a reason. If done correctly, networking builds a foundation of many partnerships that drive referrals, new connections and ultimately a company’s bottom line.
3. Monitor External Sources.
In a world where the only consistency is change, it is crucial that a business monitors the trends around them. For instance, no matter the market, there will be swings throughout the year. A business must be able to accommodate to prosper through these fluctuations. Any business that fails to do so will falter quickly.
The competition can tell leadership a great deal about how operations should be run. While it is vital not to copy everything a competitor does, staying in the know is extremely beneficial. There is an incredible amount of competition in all industries and to be ignorant whether consciously or subconsciously can easily become a company’s fatal flaw.
Expert Tip: While it is critical to monitor these external sources, remember that they are just that, external. The emphasis here is that one cannot control these outside issues, so while they should be paid attention to, it is important to not obsess over them.
4. Know Your Limits.
With all of the many aspects of a business, it can be extremely difficult to not only manage, but master everything involved. Even attempting to do this often leaves the business owner overworked and exhausted. Every business owner will come to this realization at some point and when they do, it generally hits like a ton of bricks.
The beauty of delegating responsibilities is that it allows a leader to oversee everything but finally focus on the jobs at which they excel the most. For many business owners, this idea of relinquishing control may be unsettling but the advantages will far outweigh the disadvantages as long as the right people are in place to pick up the reins.
In order to feel comfortable delegating tasks to others in the company, one needs to ensure that the value system of each employee is aligned with the culture and vision that has been laid out. This is where the hiring process takes on vast importance. It is important to have a queue of qualified candidates ready in case there is major growth or any current employee leaves unexpectedly. By preparing for either of these circumstances, operations will not miss a beat and culture continues to be upheld.
If a company foresees growth, this is a great reason to hire candidates of a higher caliber and expect even more from them. Much of what makes a company successful stems from hiring the right people. If one is able to hire the right managers and employees, then their focus can shift to every other aspect of running the company. By making this a priority, remaining operations can be given their due diligence and success becomes far more likely.
Joel Freimuth is the President of Blue Pearl Consulting Firm, founded in 2011. Freimuth has years of experience and expertise in management consulting, financial analytics, business development and strategic planning. Blue Pearl is located in Chicago, IL, and specializes in creating, implementing and maintaining strategies to assist its clients in reaching their stated goals.