In my work with more than 4,000 start-up clients over the past twenty five years I have noticed a recurring pattern – many of these new entrepreneurs have set a financial goal they want to achieve their first year in business, but they haven’t committed to writing a detailed description of how they intend to achieve this result.
The process of doing so is known in the business planning process as “marketing planning”. Technology-oriented businesses often title this work as creating “the business model”. Continue reading
Where I grew up there is a little outdoor sporting goods store that I love to visit. It is sandwiched between a Mexican restaurant and an old magazine and tobacco store. Its location is nondescript and doesn’t get very much attention. However, once you’re inside – it is a whole new world. The sights, sounds and smells take you somewhere special. There are pictures of world famous climbers. They are always the first to have the newest climbing, skiing, and camping equipment. The employees actually use the gear they sell. They can tell you where the best snow is, or where the best campsite is. They recognize you when you walk in and will ask how the jacket you bought last winter is holding up. Sure, there may be illicit smells wafting from the employee break room, but that’s just how it is. That is what small businesses are- unique and custom tailored to the local community; providing a product or a service with you in mind. Continue reading