Page 5 - NBIZ Magazine April 2021
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“Why” this principle is important   month asking themselves, “How much   process is a series of actions or steps
        is probably the first question to be   time did I devote to working IN the   that deliver a particular result while,
        answered? The answer is RESULTS.     business from fighting yesterday’s   a procedure is an established method
        Without results/profits, one’s business   fire to marketing through digital or   of undertaking the process.
        would no longer exist.               social media?” Next, the owner(s)      Recently, I read an article that chal-
           The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics   should review his/her’s time devoted   lenged business leaders to evaluate
        reported approximately 20% of U.S.   to working ON the business. Did you   their marketing efforts by applying
        small businesses fail within the first   observe any differences?        the 20/80 rule. This author took an
        year. Then after five years, the failure   Yes, strategic planning is an in-  unusual path and asked what would
        percentage increased to 50%. Within   vestment of time upfront. Yet, in over   happen to one’s marketing results if
        a decade, only one-third of small    a year, if the planning involved even   one began to reverse this principle?
        businesses remained.                 40 hours, what percentage would that   The author suggested assessing
           From my twenty plus years of      be? The answer is less than 2% based   current marketing actions (80%) and
        working with solo entrepreneurs,     on a 40-hour workweek with a 52-    then redirecting those efforts to those
        small business owners, and even      week year. Would such strategic plan-  actions that delivered better results.
        larger million to multi-billion-dollar   ning efforts allow one to review one’s   Again, from my experience many
        organizations, the inability to secure   results on a quarterly or even monthly   small business owners, especially solo
        results is usually attributed to the lack   basis so that one is not scrambling at   entrepreneurs, engage in spray and
        of any strategic planning. As President   the end of the financial year?   pray marketing. “Spray the marketing
        and General Dwight Eisenhower said,    By now you may realize the answer   efforts all over the place and then pray
        “Plans are worthless, but planning   to the “Where” question is simple:   something sticks.” Social media has
        is everything.” Strategic planning by   probably everywhere. Planning the   only enhanced the “spray and pray”
        its very nature clarifies most if not all   answer to both the why and where   marketing process. Some believe
        aspects of business. This clarity often   question. Processes and people are also   social media or digital marketing is
        reveals the Pareto Principle from what   the answer to the “Where” question.  the quick fix to poor results or easy
        clients generate 20% of business income   Marketing, sales, financials,   money. Nothing could be further from
        to what 80% of the efforts such as mar-  customer service, innovation, and   the truth.
        keting only deliver 20% of the results.  recruitment to growth are all pro-  Sales is another very confusing
           Years ago, I developed this       cesses. As an aside, there sometimes   word. In business, selling is consid-
        amazingly simple acronym of ACE:     is confusion between process and    ered sales. Yet, when clients or cus-
        Assess, Clarify, Execute. When       procedure. To ensure clarity, a     tomers make purchases, they are also
        looking at  results, planning begins
        with assessing various elements
        or factors regarding the business       The U.S. Bureau of Labor
        including external factors such as
        economy, competition, etc. to internal   Statistics reported
        ones including employees, sales
        process, employee reviews, etc. From    approximately
        this detailed and sometimes time-       20% of U.S. small
        consuming activity, leaders can clarify
        what is important and gain crystal      businesses fail within
        clarity or those “aha moments.” Then,
        when leaders execute specific actions   the first year.
        (action steps from the now assessed
        and clarified goals), improved results
        happen. Just think if 20% of one’s      Then after five years,
        executed actions would deliver 80% of
        one’s business results where would      the failure percentage
        one’s small business be?
           In the book, The E-Myth, Michael     increased to 50%. Within
        Gerber emphasizes one of the reasons
        small businesses fail is the owner      a decade, only one-third
        or owners spend most of their time
        “working on the business” instead of    of small businesses
        “working in the business.” Owner(s)     remained.
        should regularly take a moment and
        review the past workweek or work

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