Everyone wants to save money, boost their bottom line, increase their revenue, decrease their costs and simply make more cash. It’s not easy being a regular Joe Schmoe small business owner just trying to make ends meet. If you’re like most, you’re probably stuck in the daily grind, juggling clients, trying to develop the business, handling the networking and marketing, managing the cash flow, and on and on it goes.
Sadly, this is indicative of one big underlying (not to mention recurring) theme: you are focused on your short-term needs and aren’t paying enough attention to everything that’s affecting your bottom line. I find that business owners have money locked up in expenses and operational costs that can be retrieved with a little guidance. In fact, I recently saved a client $70,000 per year just by implementing a better strategy to help manage expenses more effectively.
The cash is there, waiting to be tapped. You just have to change your mindset and take a look at things with a fresh perspective.
So how can you unlock the hidden cash in your business?
What to Consider
There are things you can do right now to turn things around and save yourself some cash. I’m not talking a few hundred here, a thousand there. I’m talking big money that you can use to invest in capital, open a new location, or even take a trip if that’s what you want to do.
Here are a few things to consider:
1. Analyze Your Focus
You really need to sit down and map it all out. Where you are spending the bulk of your time? Where is your focus? Are you spinning your wheels on unnecessary stuff or “busy work” instead of billable hours? If so, you’re losing opportunities to make more money. Period. It’s true: time IS money.
2. Determine if Certain Expenses are Necessary
You can’t operate a business without incurring expenses. They happen and you have to deal with them. But are you spending money on the right things? Are you buying products or services that aren’t serving your bottom line? I bet if you tracked it all, you’d come up with more than a few line items you could eliminate without suffering much.
When you’re in the grind, you stop questioning things, you get complacent, you figure “that’s the way it’s always been.” In effect, you welcome the status quo. Like they say with personal auto insurance: challenge your premium every couple of years, shop around and it may save you $$$. Well, the same idea holds true for business expenses.
Rethink your purchases. Do they serve your purpose? Are they even really necessary to run a successful business? If not, get rid of them. You don’t have to keep doing things just because you always have.
3. Hire a Business Coach
The most successful small businesses will use a business coach at some point in their evolution. Sometimes it can be refreshing to admit you don’t know everything, get a little guidance and gain fresh perspective on where you’re at. It’s where true profound knowledge comes from: the outside view.
No matter what stage your business is at, says Inc., a business coach can make you work harder and progress faster than you could on your own, from helping expand your network to providing a much-needed ego check. A business coach gives you both the tools and perspective you need to get from point A to point B.
A business coach will:
- Show you how to look at your business from different angles.
- Get you to ask the right questions about the business so that you can adjust your focus and create the right Vision & Mission that brings alignment to your organization. Without an effective path to change, success is limited.
- Use data to understand your processes, costs, capabilities and capacity, and drive improvements in behavior.
- Lend their experience to guide you through the necessary changes to make your company perform better.
All these things and more can be improved using a business coach/consultant.
So, back to the title of the story: I made my client $70K a year using all the above methods: to focus efforts, improve expenses, create efficiencies in process and workforce, make corrections in pricing, drive elimination of bad products, and rectify margins.
All these things added up to real and significant savings to the bottom line.
So what are you waiting for? Start thinking differently about your business and you’ll be surprised at what treasures you’ll find.
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