One of the benefits of being a business coach is that I get to meet business owners across the whole spectrum of business sectors. I get to see what is working and what’s not working in their business. This external perspective can be hugely revealing – see the wood for the trees!! There are many common mistakes that come up again and again. By sharing a few of them with you, maybe they will seem familiar and the solutions will help you to get better results…
Common Mistake: Wasting money and time on strategies that are not working without realising it.
This could be wasting time and money on marketing strategies or on how to deal with employee issues or on dealing with difficult customers. Many times business owners end up defaulting back to a strategy because it is what they are comfortable with or because they have not learned to do it any other way. In the interest of getting through their to-do list they follow the same old habit pattern. Maybe a part of them knows it’s not working but they do not have time to sort it out now, they’ll get around to it someday.
The number 1 mistake is not knowing the numbers to be able to analyze which strategies are working and which are not. The time has not been allocated to review these numbers and the trends over time. There has been no testing and measuring of different solutions to understand which works best and why. There is no objectivity only opinion so their response is rationalized and justified on flawed thinking.
Over the last few months, many businesses have had to furlough staff or have them work from home. Now they are faced with decisions on who to take back, when to take them back, who can continue to work from home, how many days a week. These are tough decisions to make and like many decisions, they will be made on instinct with a tendency to move back to the old more comfortable ways of working. If we had a history of carrying out regular team appraisals and had measures in place on performance then this data would help us make a more informed decision. How many small businesses have taken the time to gather this level of data in the last couple of years? If you are not carrying out appraisals and gathering objective performance data then start now so you are ready the next time.