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StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Five Key Aspects You May Miss Out When Starting Your Business

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship ArticleStarting a new business can be simultaneously exciting and terrifying. You have this idea in your head, and now it’s time to make it into reality. But it can be easy to get caught up in the excitement of starting something new and wholly yours that you might neglect some parts of the process. And as the saying goes, “the journey is far more important than the destination.”

Here are five things you may miss out as part of your business endeavor that proves to be essential in the long run:

Make sure you have a detailed and well-researched business plan

This is the foundation of your business idea. Without a business plan, you might as well be grasping in the dark and may even jeopardize the running of your business in the long term. It’s easy to make mistakes when it comes to business plans, and you may miss out on certain things so do your research, and you’ll thank yourself later.

Customers, products or services, operations, sales and marketing strategies, management and competitors – these are the absolute minimum, and when writing up your business plan, you must include all of these key areas. Show that you have done your research and that you did not just run into the business industry with an idea and no plan by including industry trends and market analysis. As well as this, your plan must include a detailed financial flow, from month cash flow to income statements.

That being said, don’t get caught up in the details. This can be common with technology-based start-ups where technical jargon is thrown around, without taking into account the reader. But if you must include such keywords, make sure to include an appendix to increase accessibility. A business plan must be easy to read and understand so lay down your idea and your plans as succinctly as possible. Take into consideration that you may be required to submit a business plan when asking a bank for a loan or applying for business grants to further grow your business. Without strategies set in place, whether this is for sales and marketing or otherwise, you cannot persuade a bank to lend you what you need.

A business plan is not only useful when applying for loans or grants, but also acts as a guide to grow your business. This helps you identify and pursue goals and objectives that lead to the growth of your company and details the steps that will need to be taken to accomplish this.

Invest in reliable security

Whether you are starting an e-commerce or are venturing into opening a physical store, investing in reliable security is one of the most important steps you can take.

This is particularly relevant to data security. Chances are, your business will use electronic systems and these use data to operate. From information regarding your employees to your customers, these are all data.

With such sensitive and confidential data in your company’s system, you must put into place to keep these as secure as possible. Your customers, particularly, are trusting you with their sensitive information, whether these be bank details or home addresses, whenever they buy your product or use your service. When there is a breach in security, it is not only revenue that is at stake but your customer’s trust – and as a result, your company’s reputation. It is important that you invest in reliable security to keep sensitive and confidential data as safe as possible.

Likewise, keeping your home office or store safe is also a priority. There are many security technologies that allow you to monitor the location through real-time updates and notification systems and you can find out more from this website about the options available.

By increasing the security for your business and ensuring your customers know that you take their data protection and safety as a priority, you can increase customer satisfaction and loyalty and increase your business’s reputation.

Check if you are legally allowed to use your business name

Make sure you check if your business name is taken by another company before you start printing this on business cards, social media and other marketing and sales related areas. A simple search can let you know if the name you have chosen for your business is already taken or if you are free to use it. If the name is already trademarked and you have used it, then this can land you in legal trouble.

Don’t forget to set up a business bank account

Combining your personal and business finances leads to confusion – and it can create suspicion if ever your local or state tax bureaus or the IRS start asking questions. You’re far better off keeping personal and business monies separate for those reasons – and certain legal structures require you to do it that way. As a bonus, you’ll appear more professional and credible when writing checks from your business versus your personal account.

Know your competitors

You may think that your new product or service has no competition, is novel and above existing products – you’re wrong. Most often than not, it’s extremely rare to not have any competitors in an increasingly saturated business industry. But this doesn’t have to be a weakness; instead, do your research. Find out who your competitors are and how your business can be better.

How can you differentiate your business from an existing one? By researching your competitors, you can not only find ways on how you can improve your own business but also learn more about your own business as a whole, your customers and their habits.

By constantly improving and adapting to a constantly changing business industry and customer base, you can ensure your business stays on top and beat out competitors when the tides change.
Making your business idea, a reality can be exciting. With these few things in mind, you can ensure that even if the road towards your business goals and objectives is rocky, that you will know exactly where to go for success.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Restaurant Design – Why It’s About More Than Aesthetics

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship ArticleWhilst restaurant design is about aesthetics, there is far more to it than that! It is about the atmosphere, the comfort, and the functionality just as much as it is the aesthetics – with a restaurant, there are so many parts and processes that it is important to consider every possible angle when you are designing something. There are a lot of logistics involved, too.
So, if you are choosing to take on the task of re-designing your restaurant on your own then carry on reading. This and so many other resources cover the things that you need to know.

#1: Choosing the Right Furniture

One of the most important aspects of restaurant design is the furniture that you choose. After all, your furniture can make or break the entire look, feel, and atmosphere of your restaurant and it is what all your guests are going to use. Finding a suitable restaurant furniture supply company can be difficult to get right, but it is important that you settle on the right supplier for the job. Look for one that supplies furniture to fit your budget and aesthetic.

For restaurants, the best furniture design and arrangement is always going to be one which maximizes the number of covers without making things look overly crowded. It’s not just about how the tables look; it’s about mixing shapes, sizes, and types of table, and possibly even materials.

#2: Restaurant Acoustics

Acoustics should match the overall style of your restaurant. If you have a quieter restaurant then your acoustics shouldn’t be too loud or echoey. Don’t be afraid of installing acoustical ceilings or using larger and taller ceilings (if possible) if you want a louder and more open space.

Tiles, accent walls, and banquettes are ways that you can use different textures and styles which aid with the acoustic aspects and provide a stylistic effect.

In addition to the ceiling, the material used on the floor can either help to dampen or heighten acoustic noise. We’re not talking about thick carpets either – these are massively outdated. There are plenty of specialist materials which can get the desired look, feel, and effect.

#3: Lighting Creates a Vibe

Lighting can either create a great vibe or completely destroy one. It’s not just about ceiling lights and making the room brighter, lighting is about lighting up art and accents, interesting design pieces, and it helps to set the overall atmosphere.

A restaurant that carefully thinks about its lighting fixtures and places them properly helps to make the place more theatrical by highlighting not only the guests’ tables but by making everybody look good and setting the overall ambiance.

When you are designing your restaurant, it comes down to far more than the aesthetics of the furniture that you use. You can have the best-looking furniture and design in the world, but if you can’t set the right ambiance and overall atmosphere by properly working with lighting and noise in addition to other important factors, then you are unlikely to impress your diners and achieve the desired impact.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article

Empower Your Employees With Learning… Whatever Your Budget

As an entrepreneur, you know that your unique combination of passion, talent, skills, training, experience and business acumen are integral to the success of your enterprise. Nonetheless, you also understand that you could not have achieved the measure of success you’ve gained in your enterprise alone. Your great ideas light the way, but the hard work, dedication, passion and ingenuity of your staff also plays a huge role in your business success. As such, your employees deserve every but of support, training, development and guidance you can provide them.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article
 
The trouble is that this invariably comes at a monetary cost to your business. Smaller and newer businesses which are still finding their way and doing their best to keep their heads above water financially are understandably full of trepidation when it comes to spending money at the expense of their all-important profit margins. Fail to invest in your employees, however, and the results could be disastrous.

What happens when you fail to develop your employees

While it’s understandable that new entrepreneurs might be keen to keep a close eye on the purse strings, this may be at the expense of your business. Underdeveloped employees will at best lose motivation, resulting in a loss of productivity or dip in quality of service for your customers. At worst, they may quit your organization altogether, even running into the open arms of your competitors, thereby giving them an edge over you. Even if this doesn’t happen, you will still have to endure the expense and dip in productivity while you recruit and train their replacement.

Let’s take a look at just a few of the ways in which you can give your employees the gift of professional development…

In-house training

If you want to ensure that your employees do things your way, making sure that your customers get such a continuity in service that it’s like you’re dealing with each and every customer yourself. While in-house training can be cost-effective and ensure brand continuity, every now and then an outside perspective is appreciated, which brings us to…

External training providers

The benefit of using external training providers is that no matter how knowledgeable you may be, even the best of us has blind spots in our knowledge. External training providers can bring a fresh outside perspective to your business while also having training and motivational techniques that you may never even have considered. While again this may result in additional expense, it may well be to the benefit of your business.

Online learning or community college

If you worry about a productivity dip while your employees are developed on company time, you may benefit from funding, or part-funding their own learning through community college or online learning. This puts the onus on the employee and gives them the gift of academic or vocational qualifications that can empower them throughout their career. With a plethora of online courses out there from an online rn to bsn program to just about any academic degree you can imagine, online learning is an extremely powerful tool that shows your employees how much you value them.

The only downside is that it may be tricky incorporating their learning into their operational activities in a cohesive way.

An open door

Finally, sometimes the best and easiest form of development comes in the form of an open door. By allowing your employees an opportunity to talk to you and taking the time to explain processes and procedures in a little more detail you can ensure operational excellence while establishing yourself as the kind of boss they can always rely on.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

How Business Consulting Can Help Your Healthcare Business

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship ArticleYou want your business to be the best that it can be. The only way for that to happen is to make sure you have a good plan in place. By scheduling healthcare consulting, you can ensure that you have thought of everything. Sometimes, it takes someone from the outside to see what’s really going on with your healthcare business.

Explore Organization

A consultant will be able to look at the organization of your business. This includes looking at the effectiveness of the structure, how it can be better aligned, and how it can be developed to get you to the next level. It might be too top heavy or it might not have enough people in key positions. Once you have a better organizational design, it can strengthen your capabilities.

Look at Decision Making and Strategies

It’s important to look at your strategic operations as well as how decisions are made. A consultant will be able to look at who makes the decisions, what information is used to make these, and how information flows to the various stages of management. If there isn’t enough strategic thinking taking place, practical solutions can be executed.

Measure Performance

A consultant can also help to establish KPIs and manage performance. If there is no measurement on performance in place, it can be difficult to see if you’re doing well or not. Performance management should be on every level, including employees, managers, and individual projects.

Asking for help in the form of healthcare consulting can be just what your company needs. An implementation team can help to improve the effectiveness and increase the value of your business. You can stay competitive and ensure that you’re becoming the innovative healthcare business you always knew that you could be.

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article

Mobile Forms and Their Positive Impact on Modern Business

It is impossible not to agree that mobile technology is a tidal wave of progress in modern business. Mobile is everywhere: in the way we communicate, manage any process, and work with data. The last point is the most important nowadays, because it is a huge innovation of the last years, which is essential for any field. Businesses today often have an increasing need to enable workers at the jobsite to collect data while outside of the office. Mobile forms have become a real revolutionary solution for that. Let’s figure out what other benefits modern specialists can get from mobile forms.

Convenience and mobility

The first obvious advantage of mobile forms is their ease and convenience of use in any location. Such fields as construction management, vehicle and fleet maintenance, warehousing and more have a lot of fieldwork related to data. It is not always possible to manually fill out paper documents or make some writings. Thus, there are errors, inaccuracies or untimely data. Mobile forms eliminate this, allow specialists to instantly and easily fill out pre-made forms in a few clicks.

Cut costs on paperwork

Companies spend $20 in labor to file a document, $120 in labor to find a misfiled document, and $220 in labor to reproduce a lost document. 15% of organization’s revenue is spent on creating, managing and distributing documents (Coopers & Lybrand study). Mobile forms allow reducing costs on paperwork. Modern mobile solutions cover not just data collection, but its processing and creation of complete reports on-the-go. Special mobile form apps are able to become a real pocket office, freeing businesses from extra costs to maintain file cabinets.

Accuracy and timeliness

Mobile forms bridge the gap between job site and office, cutting the time of data delivery. Necessary information can be instantly captured, processed and sent via email or other services right from the field. This contributes timely decision making and solving issues. In the end, such clear organization and timeliness have a positive effect to the whole business, eliminating delays and extra time in a workflow.

Optimized and safe storage

Storage of data is another problem of companies which still prefer paperwork. According to Capita (Document and information services), overall 61% of facilities managers believe they are still too reliant on paper-based systems. Just imagine the disastrous consequences of loss or damage of paper-based records. Mobile forms provide convenient and safe storage of data in the cloud, which is available 24/7 at a mobile device. It also helps a company to protect itself in case of any litigations.

Nowadays businesses can digitize any forms: daily logs, inspection forms, audits, estimation forms, invoices, etc. It’s time to make a step to the digital future and let mobile technology work for you.


About the Author

Snappii is a leading provider of mobile business apps, which are used by about 500,000 people in 30+ industries around the world. Moreover, Snappii offers no code PDF Form Converter to transform existing paper forms to Mobile Form Apps.

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article