Everyone knows the statistics when they first start out. Almost half of all new businesses in America fail in their first year of trading. It’s not always down to poor markets, bad economies and a lack of interest in a product either, sometimes, it’s down to bad management.
However, a business doesn’t head down the fail track overnight. There are a lot of factors that come to light in the months before a business begins to fail, and being able to identify them before it’s too late is important. If you are noticing a sudden halt in the growth of your business, a slowing down in cash flow and a huge lack of interest in your brand, the alarm bells should be ringing.
Usually, business owners start cutting the fat and reigning in their expenses in the hope they can turn things around. But that doesn’t solve the problem, only slows it down. Other business owners choose to jump ship and start working out how to go about selling a business instead of saving it, but that’s not the right thing to do if you still have faith in the company itself. What you want to do is breathe new life back into the business that you started and drag it back to success kicking and screaming.
For a business, pivoting sounds simpler than it actually is. Some businesses may need a change in their business model, while others need a change in customer. Rather than diversifying the product or service, some companies like the change the service that they already offer so that they can come at it from a new direction. Sometimes that new direction does exactly what is needed to save the business.
This is a particularly hard one for small businesses, because the idea of changing the brand that was worked so hard on is not an easy pill to swallow. If your product isn’t positioned properly in the market, a rebrand could be the breath of life you need to sway things another way.
It’s not just a change of colour scheme or logo, it’s a case of changing how your brand approaches the market.
Coming back to the fact that sometimes bad management is the reason for a failure in a business, you need to learn how to refocus. If your business started to get successful and you got itchy feet and started concentrating your efforts elsewhere, then the problem is you. You can’t just raise a business to success and then drop it like a stone – a successful business only stays successful with hard work. Knuckling down and focusing on what you have is the way forward, as is working out how to push for success all over again.
When you can see all the signs that your business is failing, you need to get back on your feet and be proactive. Don’t sit and wait for it to sink; people are relying on you for their livelihood. Be positive and steer your business straight again.