Building a Sustainable Business

This Month’s Topic: Building a Sustainable Business

Keep the End in Mind

Whether you are just starting your business, or you’ve been in business for years, it is important to keep the end in mind. By that I mean, “What is the end result you want to achieve by being a business owner?”  What is your primary reason for having a business?

Scenarios to Explore

Let’s explore a few scenarios that could be your “end in mind:”

  1. You want your business to be a legacy business – one that is handed down from generation to generation. 
  2. You decide your business will be a “gazelle company.” David Birch of the research company Cognetics defines  a gazelle company as being “a high-growth company  that is increasing its revenue at least 20% annually for four years on a base of $100,000 in revenues.” The end result is rapid growth, revenue growth, and the potential to sell a valuable asset.
  3. Or perhaps you want to have a lifestyle business that allows you to generate the income you desire while also allowing you the flexibility to manage your hours so you can spend time with your family or friends or pursue other interests.
  4. Or maybe you want to grow your business, involve investors, and take your company public.
  5. Or maybe you’ve uncovered an opportunity that you want to build as a short-term business and sell it for a profit?
  6. Or maybe there is a totally different reason.

Think with the End in Mind

Ask yourself, “What is the end result I want for my business?” The answer to this question can help you build a sustainable business. The decisions and choices you make today should be influenced by where you want your business to be when you decide to exit it.

Get Clear…and Stay Clear… on Your WHY

What is your WHY? What is your driving force?  Why do you do the work you do? Getting clarity about your purpose is the most important element that will keep you moving in the direction you want to go.  

Purpose is at the heart of every successful business. It is what drives you and your team to achieve results and reach your goals. With a clear purpose, you will make better decisions, use your resources more effectively, and be strategically driven. Getting clarity about your purpose helps you stay focused, motivated, and working to achieve your goals.

Keep Your Eye on the BIG PICTURE

Getting clear on your purpose also helps you keep your eye on the long-term BIG PICTURE. It’s easy in business to get distracted by the demands of the day-to-day work – filling customer orders, marketing, dealing with the finances, hiring and nurturing staff, networking, and much more. The day-to-day demands and deadlines can be like a dense fog that blocks your view of your desired end result. 

TAKE ACTION TIP: Write your WHY. Put it on a post-it note, in your phone, or on your screensaver. At the end of the day or whenever you feel overwhelmed/discouraged/or wondering why you are working so hard, read your WHY. Somedays you may need to read it several times a day. Do it! It will remind you of the important end result you are working towards.

Grow your business using strategic planning. Strategic planning can help you develop the clarity to stay focused and take action. In this guide, you will discover the reasons smart companies use strategic planning, tips to make strategic planning work for your business, and how to build a sustainable business.

Judy Whalen
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