710 Barriers to Business Success

Why is it that some businesses take their market by storm and grab the No 1 supplier spot while others seem to languish in the backwater? On the face of it they may not seem so very different – similar set up, same number of staff, central location, etc, etc, so what’s stopping the rest from giving them a run for their money and taking pole position?

Here are 10 barriers that get in the way:

1. Poor reputation

“A boo is a lot louder than a cheer. If you hear 10 people cheering and 1 person booing you’ll hear the booing.”
Lance Armstrong

If you want to be ‘top of mind’ in your market you need to deliver such an outstanding service that your customers, clients and employees become your ‘Raving Fans’ and act as your ambassadors. What do your stakeholders think about you? If you don’t know, how can you improve?

2. Poor management and leadership

In a top-performing small business environment the person at the helm invariably has a unique blend of skills and talents, which incorporate both management and leadership skills. They manage their business by planning, organising, and co-ordinating the work of the business, utilising the strengths of the individuals in the team to get optimum efficiency. They achieve exceptional results by combining leadership skills to inspire, motivate and engage everyone in the goals of the business.

3. Lack of values

Top performers know what their company values and those values are demonstrated in everything they do every day. They go out of their way to hire people who match those values.

4. Low employee morale and high turnover

Customers, clients and suppliers all value building long, strong and meaningful relationships with your employee team. When someone leaves your company it puts a potential crack in your relationships with your key stakeholders and it doesn’t take long before your competitors are knocking on the door.
That means nurturing, training and developing your people so that they want to stay working with your company, and they feel empowered in their job.

5. Lack of processes

Top performers always use well-developed and proven processes to deliver their products and services, and most aim to standardise at least 80% of the routine tasks. Things like meeting and greeting, answering the phone, payroll and administration are documented with step- by-step best practice instructions to ensure consistent and excellent service delivery.

6. Bad time management

Top performing small businesses invariably have significantly higher productivity than the average. They understand that the old adage ‘time is money’ still holds true and use their time effectively and efficiently. Everyone is coached to use effective time management techniques to achieve their individual and company goals.

7. Weak sales

The more quality face-to-face time you spend with prospects, customers and clients, the more you’re likely to build relationships and grow your business. Top performers start as they mean to go on by defining their ideal customers and using that as the blueprint for their prospect database. Sales people have agreed targets and goals, which are reviewed on a regular basis. Service people are coached to identify sales opportunities with existing clients.

8. Poor communication

In any small business environment, things can change in a moment. Top performers have well defined communication systems so that everyone is ‘in the know’ about important details and can react efficiently and effectively in a crisis.

9. Slow to act

High achievers are comfortable making faster decisions, changing direction as necessary and reacting to market forces. They don’t get left behind through inactivity, procrastination and lethargy.

10. Bad hires

‘We’re slow to hire; fast to fire’ is a maxim you’ll hear in a high performing recruitment business. By designing and executing a well thought out hiring process they avoid ‘desperation’ hires and wait for the best candidate, however long it takes.

Are you a Top Performer?