There are tools that help you make decisions: tools like The Vroom-Yetton-Jago Decision Model (Deciding How to decide) or OODA Loops (Understanding the Decision Cycle)
But in a small business, one of the most useful tools to use is CASHFLOW projections
Why is your cashflow so important for a small business to consider?
- Cashflow shows you what happens if you make the decision – the good, the bad and the ugly if you do it honestly.
- Cashflow shows you the effect on your resources when you have made the decision
One of the greatest challenges in forecasting decisions is that you need to do enough research to determine all the additional costs of delivering the idea to your clients and you also need to research the potential buying pool. For many business owners they use the wind test.
You know the one where you wet your finger and stick it up to determine which way the wind is blowing. Another term for this kind of research is crystal ball gazing.
Reality is often very different but you need to know:
- why your prospect needs your offering.
- what will happen for your prospect after they buy it
- How will your prospect find out about your offering
- When will your prospect buy it and how often. This is often an education issue
- Where will your prospect go to purchase it
- Who will they trust to recommend the product
Are you making a decision? Do you have enough information including the vision of what your life, your client’s life and the community looks like when you make the decision and deliver the product or service?
In the comment box, please share your greatest decision making experience. Or what was your worst decision and why did you decide that way?
Have you downloaded your free copy of Find Your Niche Yet?
To decisions that grow your business
One of the greatest challenges people face is making a choice between two or more similar offers. It is a decision that people often make either by choosing the familiar or choosing based on the money in their wallet. Making the choice between offers can result in making
no choice at all.
As a business owner, you are making offers to clients, prospects and the world every day. You need to recognize that for your buyer, they have to choose between. And consumer laws prevent advertising from saying we are better than Brand X because of….. Helping your buyers choose your option There are a few things you can do to help buyers choose you.
- One way is to constantly send them messages until they take an action. The action could be to turn you off or tune your message out or it could be to buy you. A recent study anecdotally showed that people will remember and therefore choose to buy from annoying, loud television advertisers, simply because they were annoyed and so recalled the business when they went to buy an item.
- Another way is to personally talk to your prospect until they see that your product or service is wonderful. In this case it really is a case more of buying you to deal with the service
- And then you can present benefits in enough places and pray that rationale people will see the merit of your argument and buy your product or service.
But even when you can convince someone to choose your product or service, keep in mind that their experience and the experience of their friends and colleagues will influence their feelings about you. In a previous blog on cognitive dissonance, I looked at the after purchase experience and how it can affect your next sale. Today there are so many choices for practically every single product and service. Choosing has become difficult and buyers often feel overwhelmed by their options. Your Business Challenge Your challenge as a business person is to help your prospects make the choice of YOU! To do this you need to invest both time and money to increase awareness that you are a choice that they need to consider, This means promoting your business according to your budget and MONITORING every action. There are great tools that claim to monitor but a simple spreadsheet that tracks your promotion, response and income, is adequate. And as part of this challenge, you need to invest time is tweaking, measuring and revamping everything you do, Choices You choose. They choose. We all choose how to spend our money, spend our time and more importantly how we feel before, after and during all our experiences and purchasing decisions, What do you do to promote your business? In the comments, promote your business by sharing what you do. To your growth
are thousands of new articles to read and listen to published every hour of the day.
And as a business owner, you need to decide what to do with this information.
Understand the Danger of the Closed Mind
Think of the big book stores. They believed that people would always buy books and despite seeing the rise of Amazon and Ebooks, they believed that people would always like to browse book shelves and leaf through books. And some people still do but….the majority of people now access their reading materials on-line.
The big book chains have closed
Or think of Kodak. A company with a history of supporting the film industry and photos. Their business was built for the non-digital picture world and even with several incredible digital cameras, they still struggled to survive.
Kodak is gone after 125 years
Do you remember sitting down to your morning newspaper and drinking your coffee while you leafed through the pages to find out what was happening in the world or to your favourite sports team. Are you still doing so? Or do you now read the news online while you sip your coffee. Is your favourite newspaper still in print?
Many newspapers and magazines have closed their doors or sold out to others
As a business person, you need to keep informed.
- You need to find the trends.
- You need to see where the new niches are.
You need information to make decisions but the key is to make decisions.
Refusing to make a decision and act on information can be costly. Making the wrong decision can be costly.
Oh dear, what are you to do?
As with anything in life, only hindsight gives you close to perfect vision but there are no crystal balls. When you make a decision, you change your future.
When you refuse to make a decision you change your future.
You can only do your best. You can only keep your word. And whatever happens, you can only deal with what happens.
Today, make a decision. Check your information first but reduce your overwhelm by limiting you research time. And what you commit to, commit with your whole heart. Commit and never regret but measure and tweak and stay informed.
You need to stay in control. And control requires information. Make a choice – read, listen and keep control on your time, money and course of action.
What are you reading and listening to today?
What are you controlling today?
Let me know in the comments box below.
To your success
History is written by the winners. But history is always written as if the initial decision was what the final result was. The dead ends and bad decisions are always written out. And rarely do we recall that things could have been different if…
In business you will make a lot of decisions. Some will lead to positive results and more decision opportunities. Some will lead to dead ends and you will need to go back to a point where you can make a different decision. Some decisions will also lead off in new directions.
Human nature is funny. We forget the dead ends and when we document the experiences, we only record the decisions that moved us toward our goal.
That is why in business, as in life, it is important to have your purpose for the project clearly in front of you and to write down you goals. That way you can check off your progress on the journey.
And keep in mind that you may decide to alter your goals but only with careful consideration alter your purpose. Goals can change with new information, ideas and circumstances.
You need the goals as markers in your decision tree though as each is a point where you need to decide how to move to the next decision. Your met goal is also the point you can return to if you go down a dead end.
A word of caution – perfect decisions are impossible. Good business owners make decisions as early as practical. If you delay to get all the information, that is a decision and sometimes that decision will cost you in lost opportunity. Procrastination can be good but also bad.
How do you know?
If your head says wait then find out if you are waiting out of fear or something else. If you are afraid of losing face or making a wrong decisions, feel the fear and decide to take action.
Being serious about doing business means making decisions and moving forward.
Simplifier, Presenter, Mentor