I used to have a copy of the Rockefeller Habits in short form laminated and I would carry it in my bag so that I constantly referred to the all-around areas of the business for which I was responsible. I see the game of pursuing perfection in each department as a continual battle to be better, cleaner, faster or not, simply but through innovation always striving to be more innovative to beat the other buggers.
Too many times people start the year without the key metrics for measuring money flow and the financials. You cannot make the best, most profitable business decisions without knowing where your cash is .. monetary ways
Grow profit – Maintained profit growth through a combination of:
WHAT is the state of your Order book? Know when your cash is in demand and in stretch and plan accordingly.
Key Performance Indicators with a rewards system that links directly to the strong performance of each individual against clearly defined goals are mission critical. Are these in place?
How are you building the brand value of your company?
Do you and your team consider the image of the company? How do you market this as a meaningful and value-added asset that communicates how you are better and different from the competition? Marketing the culture of ‘Customer First’ attitude from every part of the business matters. Do you expect from your Team a stream of “better and different” ideas and continual improvement from all? Have you created unusual parts of promotional activity cleverly focused on what works ROI – so that you can be remembered by your customers in a useful way? (some of the best giveaway money we spent was giving a very large plastic clip with a fun duck design to our housekeeping clients that placed orders and needed organised paperwork! Our brand usefully placed front and centre.
Most underrated often is the internal culture that is open, positive, collaborative and helpful – visitors go away feeling good… from the receptionist that greets the courier service who look after your packages, to sense checking the new recruits behaviour everyone plays a part in your success potential.
YOU and your company’s reputation I think is built in that order. I was brought up to do what I said I would do and not to make promises I could not keep. I find this harder as I eternally try to help more people but fundamentally this leadership backbone is critical. LOOK at yourself before you ask of others as you have to be doing and walking the walk not just demanding it?
Consistency in everything you do is brand building – integrity, confidentiality, reputation – rigorous family attitude with big company commercial professionalism systems and processes is a way to grow fast. Boring though it is, get these basic building blocks in pace and the world will be your oyster in 2014.
If you and your organisation can unleash the potential of building a continuous improvement culture throughout your business – all power to your growth potential. There are a myriad of tips and checklists, frameworks and templates to be found at our Business Frameworks site
Lara Morgan is best known for growing Pacific Direct, from start-up to successful exit, 23 years later. She now invests her time in fast growth companies and represents UKTI as an Export Ambassador, having previously exported to 110 countries. Her vast experience and business knowledge includes specialisms in licensing luxury brands, manufacturing toiletries and selling to the hospitality environment through complex global distribution chains. She's also an expert in leadership and developing talent having learnt through her own experiences of employing 500 employees in an open fast growth sales culture.