How To Grow A Sustainable Business As An Entrepreneur
As an entrepreneur, if you’re running a small or medium business, the issue of working capital is likely something you’ve come up against. After all, we all know working capital is vital to every business. Just as vital to your company is growth.
When it comes to growth, however, the actual rate of growth is extremely important. If you don’t have the financial means to support the company’s growth, you will find it difficult to meet demands and sustain the company.
Conversely, say sales are down, you’ve just incurred unexpected expenses, or your business has hit a wall. If business is too slow, you will have issues with operational costs and cash flow, and run the risk of having to close your business.
That’s why business growth at a rate that is sustainable is important and why long term value is the key to growing a sustainable business.
Why You Do What You Do
Asking Why is the best place to start. In his bestselling book, Start With Why, author and motivational speaker, Simon Sinek suggests that people won't truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the Why behind it. [watch Simon Sinek’s TED talk]
By starting with Why, you can discover your company’s purpose, why you do what you do. It’s important to review your Why on a regular basis to see if your company is living in line with its purpose.
Problem, Solution, and Your Difference
Another key component to sustainability is identifying a customer’s problem, offering a unique solution to that problem, and then identifying your competitive advantage.
So, what do your customers need? Does a solution already exist or does it need to be invented? How can it help solve their problem? What is it about your product or solution that’s unique in a competitive market? As an entrepreneur, knowing the answers to these questions shape your business model.
Being an entrepreneur, doing everything and running your business by yourself may be the only option to begin with, but over time this will prove not only exhausting but also impossible. When it comes to sustainability, pooling resources and using others’ expertise is a crucial component. Whether you hire contractors or freelancers, getting additional hands on deck is key to your growth.
Your Company Brand is Everything
Your company brand and its emotional connection with your customers is the real value of your company. Knowing your audience, targeting your audience, connecting with your audience, and adding value to your audience are what your brand is all about. If you don’t have a strong brand, or if don’t know your audience, your business is skating on thin ice.
Your brand is what will turn customers into loyal, repeat customers and your role is to nurture, sustain, and retain your relationships.
Congratulations on your sale! Now, the trick is to repeat that. Again. And again. For your company to be sustainable, sales can’t simply be through chance. Having a sales process and strategy that can be utilised and that can scale is where real success and sustainability lies.
Having a sales process in place which has been designed and perfected over time through trial and error – a combination of repeat customers and new leads – allows for the projection of sales and revenue which will ultimately sustain your business.
In addition to the tips above, check out the Forbes article Top 6 Ways to Sustain Business Growth which suggests that hiring top talent, having great leadership, and operational efficiencies which drive costs down, are among the most important factors for sustainability.
From all of us here at Ferratum Business, we wish for you a success and sustainable business!