Founder of The Business Womans Network Mandie Holgate shares her top 5 tips to make 2018 better than 2017…ignore them at your peril!
“Running your own business I don’t think I’ve ever seen a year that’s not been described as “really tough” or “unprecedently difficult environment for business” From Brexit to interest rates, wars to weather, there’s always a reason why this year is the toughest year yet, however why and how is it that some seem to thrive regardless? Creating new products and services and more importantly selling them in their thousands to adoring customers while other struggle to make ends meet and seem to fight for every sale?
What can you do to ensure the same old story doesn’t impact on your success in 2018?
Fail to learn.
Don’t berate yourself if this year saw you make the same mistakes or very similar ones to the previous year. Consider what the reasons are for this? Seriously, take a moment to look at the things that impacted on your success this year that was the same or similar to the year before. What are you scared of? What is becoming glaringly obvious as an obstacle to success. (You don’t have to tackle it (yet!) but you do need to know what it is!
Don’t go it alone.
It is a sad fact that November and December are my busiest times of the year because people struggle on through the Autumn thinking “I can do it,” and the very real realisation hits in at the end of the year that you are going to face another year of disappointment unless you do something different and fast! It’s sad because I know that if people had come to see me for coaching earlier in the year we could have dealt with the obstacles, increased sales and most importantly helped them have the business they wanted. Don’t go it alone, get some professional help. Why do we always assume we have to be master of everything in our businesses? Which leads me on to top tip Number 3.
Learn new things.
Learning new things can be scary, especially if we aren’t keen on technology, or speaking to crowds of people. Therefore, accept that to achieve more and not let 2018 suck as bad as this year, you are going to have to go for it and learn the things you hate, that or go for Top Tip Number 4.
Getting help is not a sign of weakness it’s a sign of sense. I asked the Insiders the other day if they could work just 3 quarters of their working week and still maintain their clients, productivity and current profit margin. The point being that if they couldn’t how are you going to grow your business? Learn what you can outsource to others so that you can get on with the money making jobs. (Which leads me nicely into…)
Is it a money maker?
I’ve lost track of the clients in 2017 that I’ve worked with who have discovered within the first half hour of our session that their business model is destined to fail. When you take the time to do the maths and actually work out your earning potential, as your coach I’m public enemy number one when I showcase the limitations that a clients current pricing structure, business model and strategy are creating. The realisation that no matter how hard you work it’s going to fail to produce the results you would really like is disheartening, however, I’d rather get a client to know the numbers and create a powerful business model charging the right prices before we start filling your diary with tons of clients. (There’s nothing more soul destroying to discover you are working so hard and won’t get the riches of business success!) If you have failed to make a great profit this year and you’ve worked so hard you feel you need a holiday it could be time to look at what you charge, who you work with, what hours you work and how your business model is (or is not!) working for you. If not you could be agreeing to another over worked year with little benefits for all your hard work, take half a day of 2017 to work out what really needs to change, and ask yourself “What can I expect to get more of in 2018 if I don’t take action right now?”
Don’t be a busy overworked fool, make the changes now to see the benefits in 2018.
Want more help? Check out Mandie’s courses on increasing sales, writing your first book, rocketing confidence, powerful elevator pitches and more. Ranging in price from £7 to £24! Perfect present for every busy business woman!
I suppose if someone had asked me a few months ago, what networking does for your business I would have listed the obvious;
I would have said it connects me with my ideal clients, it finds me solutions to my business, it basically ensures that I have what I need to succeed in business through a vast network of contacts and business associates.
I know that for some it still proves to be a struggle to make networking effective (ie, it helps you sustain and grow your business.) and the problem for many is they tackle networking in the wrong way.
It is about getting to know other people. For years sales and marketing gurus have been talking about getting to know, like and trust people and this is imperative in every format of your marketing strategy that truly ensure that this is being allowed to happen. So networking is not your opportunity to run around a room selling at people, it is about the basic essential knowledge that every sales person needs to know and that you are probably already aware of that people buy from people. I know it is often banded around, but stop for a moment and think about this statement.
The last time you were networking (and here you can now add social networking too) what was your approach? Was it how can I help you? Was it “here are some free connections/ideas/solutions for you and your business? Or was it top heavy with we are brilliant, and we do this and we do that?
From day one of a networking relationship it needs to be about the other person and their business needs. Think about this, if you are seriously doing this, then in every situation everyone would be doing their best for everyone else and thus everyone would get the results they were looking for. Great right?
But a word of caution.
It is an investment of your time and your money, as with any area of your marketing strategy so invest wisely. Test and measure the impact of your networking. Do you need to network in more than one place? With a different group of people? Or do you need to reconsider your networking style?
So you know what networking can do for your business success right, but here is a thought from someone who is considered a super connector. (Not my words I hasten to add)
I have always gone out of my way at every opportunity to answer the question for you “What can I do to help you?” in doing this I know that I am now considered a valuable person to network with and know, which means that when someone is ready to buy the first person they will think of is me. Remember you cannot dictate when someone is ready to buy however you can determine who they remember first when they are ready to buy. But just as importantly I recently learnt another power that networking has.
After experiencing a year of continual illness I’m glad I have a powerful marketing strategy because something that was not listed on my marketing production line (ask me about it sometime) was other people networking.
You see despite being unable to “get out there” my business didn’t suffer, new customers continued to contact me and business has steadily continued to grow. Because?
Because I have been a tireless campaigner for other people’s business success guess what happened when the chips were down and I needed help?
You guessed it.
I was inundated with offers of help and support.
So effective networking will not only provide you with contacts, potential customers and the answers to your business success. It also becomes a powerful ally to your marketing strategy.
So today ask yourself is your networking powering your success?
If not what do you need to do?
And if I can help feel free to give me a call – 07989935556 or see you at an Essex BWN event soon.
Best wishes and Happy Business
This week 1 business woman told me that I helped her get her biggest contract of 2011, another I got on ITN news and another told me where she was close to quitting she now has 3 employees – knowing me is dangerous!