Business Techniques That Are Working Today
There are two aspects to value:
1. The first is staying with your core vision or beliefs. For example, Dutch Rabobank Group, along with several other commercial banks, performed well by avoiding high profit, high-risk offerings such as sub-prime mortgages. Instead they held to low-risk lending principles. So here you can create value for clients by consistency and trust.
2. The second is sharing your vision (your value) and having others buy into it. If customers can see a tangible benefit – not just the “same old” in new packaging – they will support you. For example, Netflix and Strayer Education (an online service) use technology in clever ways to slash prices by introducing revolutionary new business models.
Shawna Martin used to be part-owner of an antique store in Mesa, Arizona – “In the summer months we would sometimes have days where less than ten people walked through the store, and even fewer bought anything. Then we went to work selling our items on ebay, where we made enough to at least pay the overhead, allowing us to keep the shop afloat during the bad months.” What other ways do you have for selling your services and/or products?
Barclays acted quickly - leaping regulatory and other hurdles - to acquire Lehman Brothers assets by 23rd September, 2008, just days after Lehman’s 14th September collapse. Within hours of the acquisition, the screens wrapped around Lehman Brothers headquarters at 745 Seventh Avenue in Manhattan switched from the Lehman name to Barclays’ blue logo. Equally decisive was Tesco’s move in 2008 to introduce a new Discount Brand line to avoid losing customers to lower-cost competitors.
Ten simple and practical success strategies:
- If your leased office is too expensive, consider working from home.
- Focus on the 20% of customers who provide you with 80% of your income.
- Reduce advertising and spend more time contacting existing customers – it’s seven times more expensive to get a new customer than to get an existing one to buy.
- Do your budgeting and know exactly where you are, every day. The truth may hurt, sometimes, but working on it will yield more results than working on an illusion.
- Don’t let the news media influence your business decisions. Take stock of your own financial climate. You might be doing great despite this economic downturn.
- Shop around for everything – stationery supplies, fuel, accountant, lawyer, cleaner … every expense you have.
- Talk to your banker – it’s free and your success is his/hers. If they are of no help, find another one who has constructive and practical business ideas.
- Don’t give up.
- Still, don’t give up.
- Don’t ever give up!