Business change as fast as the world moves. Market demands will always drive supply. Less than 10 years ago, we just got to know of the word “Facebook”, fast forward today it become one of the main channels for social communications and business ads. This drove new terms like Social Media Specialist, Influencers, KOL and so on, services that some business will need.
There are things that never change too and I prefer to spend a bit of time thinking about it, every now and then. I found comfort when I realized a quote that rhymes with my thoughts from one very successful man, Jeff Bezos
‘What’s not going to change in the next 10 years?’
When you have something that you know is true, even over the long term, you can afford to put a lot of energy into it.”Jeff Bezos
While there are no standards to all business, across all industries but I thought to share my observations that I think will be applicable for most businesses.
Which 4 Areas in Business to Focus?
Without focus, it is easy to get lost. Having this in mind will keep us as a business to stay afloat.
Pillar 1: Sales & Marketing
Always the first pillar, no business can survive without this. It took me a long time to realize this and I was lucky that business was not closed. Having sales is the first thing needed , no matter how good you are in your trade. People need to know of your services before they even buy from you. I spend my first part of my day to look into this area and what we can do about it.
Sales & Marketing, is NOT an option, but you can delegate
If you are not good at it, find a partner who is. Else outsource it to agencies but do be careful of how you pick agencies that is aligned with your goals of business.
Pillar 2: Operations
Most of us spend a lot of time here, to fulfill the sales whether it was products, or services. Many of us crafted our trades from the “technical” part of our business and launcher our business from there, guilty as charged. Over time I do realize that without sales, there is no operations, which is why I slowly transitioned more time there.
Delegating operations & managing
As time goes by, we learn to delegate and after that we need to manage. Running operations and managing can be very time-consuming. Luckily, there are many tools that can help us with it digitally. Tools available online will help to keep everyone on the same page, even without face-to-face meeting and from anywhere.
That’s the new buzzword that everyone is hoping for, wouldn’t it be great if everything can be automated. Well, the truth is not ALL can be automated, but with technology and online, many of those task can be automated.
Pillar 3: Admin & Accounts
Never take your eyes off the cash flow because it’s the life blood of businessSir Richard Branson.
Billables, invoices, receivables, audit and payroll are all part of business and obligations to everyone. Everyone getting paid will ensure the cycle comes back and the economy keeps moving. The vitality of administration and accounts cannot be understated. Every business needs cash to run thus we need to watch this basket very carefully.
Some of us would hire a specialist in Accounts, Human Resource and Payroll to make sure that what we do is also in compliance with the government rules and acts. Example in Malaysia, contributions through EPF , SOCSO and EIS are all parts of payroll so making payments on-time is crucial and required by law, penalty will be imposed for late payments.
Having a system to keep track of all this will ensure convenience for everyone involved in fulfilling the tasks. Here at Up Store , we provide systems that helps our clients to manage all this, contact us
Pillar 4: Research
The next business income
The title could be misleading and it depends on the nature of business, but generally it means looking into new services or new ways of providing products and service. Most of us are doing indirectly. We could be trying new services or products with the intention to sell it later as part of our business. In manufacturing sometimes this will involve research scientists or an engineer to fine tune the processes and lower costs
Irregular Shapes of Pillars
Some of you might notice that the shapes seems inconsistent. Yes, it is. The size of the shape is an indication of how much effort you plan to put in it. Most of us started being on the “technicals” of our business and spend a lot of time in “Operations”. Some are more extrovert and spends more time in “Sales & Marketing”.
As part of our services to our clients, we build systems to facilitate our clients operations that are always accessible to the staff to keep operations running even when they do not meet. We will be happy to discuss if we can be of service , contact us