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Put Better Business Strategies In Place

The business strategies that you have in place are going to change all the while. Business is about the ability to adapt and grow, and that’s only going to happen if you keep changing the strategies that you have in place. One might work for you for some while, but times change and better processes are developed to help businesses evolve. There is now more software and support packages offered by companies than ever before, making it easier than ever before to run a business. If we had all of the technology and equipment that we have now, twenty years ago, far more businesses would still be established and probably be very rich. So the point is, if you don’t adapt to the changes of the world and the changes that you can make, your business is always going to fall behind. We’re here to try and make sure that doesn’t happen. We want to show you some  of the better business strategies that you can have in place, to ensure your business is always flourishing.

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Put Better Business Strategies In Place

Better Use Of Software & Computers

Software and computers are the staple to any office. Whether it be a home office or a huge one full of staff, the amount of technology in the room will be astounding. But that doesn’t mean that everyone is going to be using it properly. Software and computing is always evolving to make sure that the user has the best experience. So, you need to be looking at tools that can make the use of software easier, such as the different sql join types. You should also be looking at software to download that helps you with the management of different areas of your business. For example, there is financial management software that will show you the precise profits, loses, and trends that you’re following.

More Invasive Marketing

Invasive marketing is definitely a technique that you need to put in place. Invasive marketing is different because it focuses on direct attention to the customer. Non invasive techniques are ones such as SEO and PPC. They’re harder to spot in the sense that they’re more likely to be ignored. But if you were to use TV or radio advertising, for example, it would be far harder to ignore because it’s right there in your face. All of the marketing techniques out there should be explored if you want to get the most out of your business.

Customer Retention Strategies

Customer retention is another strategy that you need to focus on. The more you can retain loyal customers, the more the news about your business will spread, and the more profit you’ll be able to make. To retain customers, you can use software that will analyse good and bad reviews, leaving you to comment and resolve the negatives. The more you track what people are saying about you, the less likely you’ll be to go wrong. Customer retention can also be improved by offering personalised discounts, customer aftercare, and 24 hour support.

How We Prioritize at Sticker Mule

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | How We Prioritize at Sticker MuleOrganizations are the sum of their decisions. Those that prioritize well prosper and those that don’t falter. At Sticker Mule, prioritization is the most important thing we do. Our growth accelerates as we prioritized better, but there’s always room to improve.

What prioritization is not

Most literature on prioritization is terrible. It leads you to believe prioritization is about time management or how to use to-do lists. This way of thinking neglects that priorities are what make or break businesses.

Consider that Amazon started as a bookstore in 1994 and grew to $147 million within 3 years. Today they employ 500,000 people who handle $200 billion in revenue. They picked the right projects and grew at an extraordinary pace.

Other retailers had different priorities and either failed or are much smaller. Walmart could be Amazon, but they did not prioritize the Internet and now they are worth half as much.

What prioritization is

Prioritization is picking the right tasks to maximize impact. That means finding high impact tasks and avoiding low impact ones. Usually the highest impact tasks are elusive. We don’t know the highest impact projects we could pursue right now.

Prioritization might sound stressful, but it’s not. Most tasks won’t affect us. Consequently, we shouldn’t stress about the backlog of tasks we “need” to do. We need to keep our minds free to pursue high impact ideas, when they present themselves, by neglecting low impact ones.

Prioritization categories

It’s unproductive to precisely categorize every task, but it’s useful to roughly classify them in your mind. Prioritization improves with practice and thinking about these categories helps us improve.

  • Growth vs. costs – It’s generally better to use our time to grow revenue than reduce costs. Time is finite. Cash isn’t.
  • High vs. low impact – High impact is better, but completing lots of low impact tasks can be worthwhile if we complete them quickly.
  • Enduring vs. temporary – Tasks that provide enduring value are preferable to those that deliver value temporarily.
  • Definite vs. potential – It’s better to pursue improvements with definite benefits than those with potential.
  • Short vs. long term results – Quick wins are preferable, but you can build competitive advantage pursuing ideas that yield results in the long term since others tend to neglect them.
  • Related vs. unrelated tasks – Sometimes related tasks are completed more efficiently when grouped together. For this reason, we often do low impact tasks that pair well with high impact ones.
  • Estimated time to complete – All else equal, tasks that can be completed faster are preferable.

Questions

Ask yourself these questions periodically to improve your ability to prioritize:

  1. What’s the most impactful thing you can work on?
  2. Did you correctly identify the problems you are facing?
  3. Do you know the most important problem to solve next?
  4. Can you replace any planned tasks with better ones?
  5. Can you delete any especially low impact tasks entirely?

Conclusion

We aim to embed a passion for prioritization into our culture. If you think similarly and want to join our global team, we are hiring.


About the Author

Anthony Constantino is the cofounder and CEO of Sticker Mule. A factory guy at heart, Anthony oversees an operation that spans 16 countries in 4 continents with customers including Google, Facebook, Twitter and many of the world’s best brands. He’s determined to make Sticker Mule, already the Internet’s favorite printing company, the absolute best place to work and shop.

10 Key Points to Remember About Die Cutting Processes and Tools

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article | 10 Key Points to Remember About Die Cutting Processes and ToolsBroadly speaking, die cutting is a machine process that allows you the opportunity to create something that has exactly the same shape and dimension every time, although that description doesn’t really do justice to how versatile the process can be.

When it comes to the die cutting tools needed for the job in hand you might want to see products from SBL, for instance, in order to get an idea of what is available and what is possible from a production point of view.

Here are some salient points to note about the die cutting process and the tools you are likely to be using.

Die cutting machines explained

Die cutting machines come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and that is appropriate when you consider that they are being tasked with creating all sorts of bespoke specifications themselves.

The digital age has seen the die cutting machine evolve and a distinct advantage offered by this sort of machinery is that it offers the ability to use a software program in order to browse previous templates and switch easily between them depending on what you want to create.

The die cutting process involves a multitude of cutting options –

Through Cutting

You might see through cutting also referred to as metal-to-metal die or through cutting and what it does is provide the ability to cut through every part of the product in one go.

The need for perforation

Another popular feature you will find on a modern die cutting machine is the option to perforate.

Perforating involves creating a number of punched-in holes that allow you to secure the die cut design in the right place on the chosen stock material.

A key feature is that although the design does not become completely separated from the relevant stock material it can still be detached with ease using the perforated lines.

Working with adhesive lined materials

Another specialist option that is possible with a die cutting machine is to use an option known as kiss cutting.

Kiss cutting allows the operator to cut a custom design through the face and adhesive layer but stopping short of cutting through the backing material layer. The end result is that the die cut design can then be easily removed from the backing layer, which remains intact.

When you need a fold line

It can often be the case that a design you are working on calls for a crease or fold to be applied and the creasing option on your machine should enable you to achieve this aim.

This is different from scoring in that you end up with material that has been reshaped to produce a bending bulge that faces inward between the two parallel stress points you have created.

The creasing process is helpful because it minimizes stress levels on the material when it is subsequently folded.

Leaving a good impression

When you need more than a fold line the answer will be to use a scoring feature.

You may not wish to make a cut that runs all the way through the material you are working on and scoring offers a solution to that requirement. It works by leaving a die impression, or alternatively, an indent or partial cut that is applied at one single chosen stress point.

Different types of die cutting options-

Flatbed for thicker materials

As you would expect from machinery that is designed to be as versatile as possible and offer a solution to many different manufacturing challenges there are several types of die cutting services that you can call upon.

Although commonly referred to as flatbed die cutting you might also see this service referred to as steel rule die cutting, and it is a process that involves using a flatbed die cutting press combined with a customized steel rule so that you can convert a material into the custom shape and design that you want.

You will find that a flatbed die cutting process will often be suggested when you are working with thicker materials.

Converting materials without dies

A digital die cutter offers the distinct advantage of faster production times and low manufacturing costs without compromising on precision or quality.

Using lasers that are guided and controlled by software on your computer the process can deploy blades and various tool bits so that all the necessary creases, cuts, and scores are applied as quickly and efficiently as possible.

When accuracy and precision is a key requisite

There will probably be tasks that you want to complete where a high degree of accuracy and precision is vital to the success of the production process.

Rotary die cutting provides that solution and the fabrication process involves using a cylindrical die that is mounted onto a rotary press to convert a material that could be flexible and delicate.

If you are looking for a die cutting service that delivers a high degree of accuracy that is combined with fine precision, a rotary die will help you achieve that aim and still perform well when tasked with high-volume production runs.

Working with many different materials

The world of manufacturing involves many unique and diverse production challenges and it also requires an ability to be able to work with a great variety of different materials.

The good news is that the die cutting process is perfectly capable of letting you work with all sorts of different materials such as plastic, paper, foam, various fabrics, wood and others besides.

As you would expect, the type of material that you need to work with will be key to the type of die cutting process that you follow in order to achieve the right outcome.

Versatility and customized capabilities aptly describe the die cutting machinery and tools that are at your disposal and it is highly likely that you will be able to find a manufacturing solution to the challenge you have been presented with once your design takes shape.

Many manufacturers would struggle to produce their products with being able to call upon their die cutter.

5 Tips for Successful Project Management

StrategyDriven Project Management Article | 5 Tips for Successful Project ManagementProject management in business can be challenging and so hiring someone who knows what they’re doing and having the right tools in place can make a big difference between your project being a success or a flop. Managing a budget, resources, and the team takes some serious organizational skills so if you want your business project to be a success, here are 5 tips to help you along the way.

Making a Solid Plan

Before you can manage a project, there needs to be a set plan in place that identifies the role of every team member and the goals for the project. It should be both clear and short. Having a solid plan for your project provides you with something to measure your success from or to change tactics if what you’re currently doing isn’t working against your plan. Planning ensures clarity for all team members and can help bring you back to the main goals of a project during the busiest times.

Hire a Project Manager

If you don’t already have a project manager in your team, now is the time to get one. A project manager is trained to know how to run projects in the most efficient way. A project manager knows how to choose a team, explore their strengths and weaknesses and use these to deliver a task to each team member. They can work alongside the team to reach the goals of the project and your business. There are countless benefits of hiring a project manager for your business.

Communicate

Within any project, communication is key to avoiding mistakes and to achieve clarity throughout the team, as well as with any clients. Effective communication must take place often between your business and clients, so they are always up-to-date. The project manager should keep in contact with all team members, regularly checking in to ensure they understand their role and are working well towards their deadline. One of the biggest failures within a project is poor communication.

Use a Project Management Software

Project management software is used by companies worldwide and is there to make your project that much easier. Rather than saving file after file and using several communication platforms to speak to team members, project management software allows for everything in one place. The Digital Project Manager has compiled an expert review on the top 10 project management software that is available for your business. Within this, you can check features, price, and usability of each software.

Evaluate

This is one that many businesses forget yet evaluating can make a big difference in how you run your project next time. We cannot improve if we do not evaluate. Use your project as a learning tool. Review what went well and what didn’t and how these mistakes could have been avoided or fixed quickly. Ask team members for their opinions too, as this allows for a total evaluation.

Successful project management is all about clarity and communicating well together. Hiring a project manager will ensure that all your projects are a success.

How To Create A Good Relationship With Your Suppliers

Suppliers provide the crucial goods and services that you require to successfully run a business. This is why it is important to create a good relationship with them. Often businesses can fail because they haven’t worked on establishing a good working relationship with their suppliers. It’s best to think about what each supplier offers rather than the cost. Of course, you need to think about managing costs overall however building a good relationship and having an excellent level of understanding between you and your supplier is just as important.

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article | How To Create A Good Relationship With Your Suppliers

Suppliers can provide quality materials and help you acquire what you need. If you have great communication levels between you they will often have a quick turn around. Meaning that Gasket Seal that you need pronto to complete a job is more likely to arrive promptly. In order to meet deadlines and targets, you will find that you sometimes have to ask them to go the extra mile and having a relationship with a supplier can go a long way into making this possible. Just like when creating a client base, you need to create a solid record of professional and timely behavior combined with the added personal touch.

Have a look below at some of the ways you can help to create a good relationship with your suppliers:

Pay On Time

You have to remember that your supplier is also a business, and this means that they want to earn money and get paid just like you do. If you know that you might have problems meeting your obligations, make sure this is worked into the contract you have between you before signing. It’s always best to be upfront when experiencing problems with payment. So, give your supplier a call as soon as you know of a problem and reach out to them in order to arrange a payment date. This is a much better working practice than leaving it and waiting for them to chase you for payment of overdue accounts.

Make An Effort To Know Them

It’s far to easy to keep things online and via email nowadays however phone calls and face-to-face go a long way in business and should be considered as important. Although everything can be done with emails it’s best to get to know your suppliers and catch up once in a while. Try visiting their office or inviting them to any company functions. Coffee or lunch is a great none pressured way to network with existing and potential suppliers, it enables you to build a personal rapport.

Make It Easy For Them

You should aim to give your suppliers adequate lead time and always communicate your needs. Crises can’t always be avoided, however, your suppliers won’t appreciate your custom if your their client that always rings last minute for supplies. Your suppliers aren’t going to be able to anticipate your needs although on occasions they may be able to supply at last minute.  What you order may need time to prepare, and sometimes they need to order in parts themselves. Work with suppliers closely and make sure they understand what your future needs may be. The more they know the better.

These are just three ways that you can help to create a good relationship with your suppliers, do have any others that you can share in the comments section below?