In a recent blog I used a little bit of doggerel from renowned copywriter Gary Bencivenga's to emphasis that unless your advertising and promotions gives the reason why your prospect should buy NOW and why they should CHOOSE YOU your promotion will be ineffective.

And ineffective promotions are a waste of money and your time. In short, a profit leak.

But advertising and promotion are not the only areas in which I come across profit leaks draining business's future. There are many other such profit leaks. In this blog I thought I should identify a few more from across a range of industries to see whether they strike a bell with you.

Do you know the profitability for each customer/account, line of business, or business unit by product, customer or deal? Or do you know only their sales?

Have you benchmarked your business? Do you know how your performance compares to averages in your industry?

Do customers walk out of the door without buying, sales call bear no fruit; lost sales opportunities are a profit leak

Do you have a "sales conversation"? Without a sales conversation you will miss many a sales opportunity. "Can I help you" is not enough?

Are you charging the right price? Could you charge more without losing sales? If you increased your price by 5%, how many sales could you afford to lose before the increase cost you money? You might be surprised at the answer.

Do you leave money on the table by not up-selling or cross selling?

Do you have payment options? Do you have a merchant account that allows you to offer full credit card services? If your competitors are making payment easier than you, they will be picking up sales at your expense.

Are there costs directly attributable to your product or service which should be in the price but are being hidden in your overheads?

What processes don't add value from the customer's perspective? Working from the perspective of the customer, "value" is defined as any action or process that a customer would be willing to pay for.

Can you reduce the time to process orders, allowing you to process more orders in the available time?

Is there waste in your business - tasks that have to repeated, on-going errors that are not fixed, premium freight costs, scrap, re-work, customer returns, complaint servicing etc. They all contribute to leaking profits.

Do you have labour or material overruns, or excessive stock levels? Are you reordering "lost" stock you already have on hand?

Do you accurately allocate income and expenses for each job and track expenditure?

Do you know your real hourly cost of labour? Most businesses don't.

How do you control, and recover non-billable time?

How long is it since you have done a thorough review of your business costs - for supplier related general expense categories such as printed matter, stationary, telecommunications, courier, insurance, cleaning services etc.

Did you find yourself answering "I don't know" to any of these? Then may be it's time to:

1. Take action! Identifying profit leaks is one thing. Plugging the leak is another. So make sure corrective and preventative measures are taken. Implementation is the name of the game. Many good money-saving ideas are lost simply through a lack of action and the leak continues.

2. Measure - Do you have regular, accurate reports on key areas of your business, and on your overheads? If you don't, how do you know whether you have a leak or not? Without measurement there will be no change. Measurement is at the core of all improvement.
If you would like to discuss these further leave your comments below.

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

Leadership has been in the news lately. In Australia we have had comments on the role played by the political and emergency services leadership (i.e. lack of) during the Black Saturday of 7th February 2009 when so many lives were lost to the bushfires. In the US questions are being raised regarding President Barack Obama's leadership in the Gulf of Mexico environmental disaster.

It is not for me to comment one way or another on either situation. However reading the discussions about the leadership roles and responses lead me to think, at a much more mundane level, about your leadership role in your small business. Coincidently my colleague Andrew Young (Directed Focus) recently carried out a small business survey which found that leadership was a more burning issue than sales, finance or planning.

Assessing leadership in a small business is not easy. Effective leaders provide direction and create a supportive environment. Leaders have to:

  • Set the strategic direction for the business (i.e. - where it is going, what it wants to achieve); that is, get the big issues right;
  • Make sure all parts of the business work together.
  • Encourage people to achieve the objectives they set.

At the same time, given the nature of a small business you no doubt also have responsibility to "do" some of the operations of your business whether it is on the tools or actually providing the service.

Staying on the tools is a trap many technical trade-based small business owners fall into. If you are going to have a "business" and not just a job you need to spend time on the direction and management of the business, to provide leadership for your business.

This does not mean that you should not do technical work or be involved in service delivery but ultimately the business must be both directed and managed.

A key decision you need to make is whether, for example, you are going to be a "builder" or to run a "building business".

Make the former decision and you will do more "doing" than "leading". You will have a job not a business.

If you make the latter decision then the leadership you provide becomes important. You will be judged, and judge yourself, on the results being achieved. These will include:

  • Setting the direction of the business - without leadership, the ship that is your small business will aimlessly circle and eventually run out of power or run aground.
  • Driving sales - without increasing sales you will not be able to justify the resources to free yourself up to manage the business;
  • Developing a track record of profitability;
  • Documenting systems and procedures which enable that profitability to be replicated by others;
  • Ensuring that there is management data and information on which to base decisions.

So you are not fighting fires or oil well disasters but even small businesses have 'spot fires' they must deal with. What is your leadership like? Are you providing direction, driving sales and helping you people meet your business's objectives?


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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

And it's not FREE!

Just for a change I thought I'd take a different tack with this blog. Most of you running your own business will have particular skills on which you built your business. And you no doubt spent years acquiring those skills, years of dedication which didn't give you the opportunity to learn one of the other skills you need in running and managing your business.

That skill is marketing, and particularly the advertising and promotional side of marketing. Just like every other aspect of running a business it is a skill, demanding its own knowledge and expertise.

No matter how good your product or service is, it won't get the sales it may deserve if it is not properly promoted.

As copywriting great John Carlton said at a seminar I attended this time last year "The marketing graveyard is crammed with great products that failed because the advertising didn't elicit that all-important desire to buy RIGHT NOW."

People do not want products; they want the benefits they provide --- whether they are tangible benefits like transport or intangible benefits like freedom or fun. Or as Bob Hacker said "The customer or prospect doesn't give a damn about you, your company or your product. All that matters is, 'What's in it for me?'"

It's advertising and promotion that conveys that message to the customer. The art of writing those advertisements, sales letters, emails and other promotions is called copywriting.

One of the legendary copywriters, now semi-retired is a bloke called Gary Bencivenga. He has spent the last 38 years painstakingly collecting and applying every secret he could find to help America's leading direct marketers achieve breakthrough response.

Some time ago I came across this bit of verse that Bencivenga put together that captures one of the key elements you must include in your advertising and promotion.

Take it away Gary!

The Most Persuasive Tool in Advertising

"How can I sell more product?" is the marketer's eternal question.
If you sincerely seek the answer, just follow my suggestion.
When it comes to creating advertising, most advice is for the birds.
But the greatest secret of success can be found in two little words.
No, they're not, as some have written, those standbys NEW and FREE.
Neither are they NOW and SALE, or even YOU or WE.
No, to open minds and wallets and have prospects eagerly buy,
The most persuasive words in advertising are simply, REASON WHY.

Whether you spread your message on TV, the Internet or by letter,
You must explain the REASON WHY your product is much better.
And while you're at it, don't forget that your audience won't believe you
Unless you give the REASON WHY what you claim is true.
To close the sale, these two little words once again point the way.
Just give me another REASON WHY I should act today.

There you have it, clear as day. If you want to sell, here's how:
Give good reasons for these three questions - why you, why true, why now?
This little secret works like magic, for all products, in all seasons.
If you want to sell like a superstar, just boldly state your reasons:
First, the reason yours is best. Second, a reason to believe,
And third, a reason to act right now - give these and you'll receive
More sales than you can imagine, gold and riches heaped on high.
The world showers you with treasure when you give the REASON WHY.

Thanks Gary.

Have a look at your recent promotions, your Yellow Pages advertisement and whatever else you do. How effective are they? Have you given your prospect a "reason why" to buy, to believe, and to act right now?

Try it, just a small step improvement.

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

Five lessons worth learning

Yes, I know you don't need a sixteen year old lass telling you how to run your business, even someone like Jessica Watson.

For those of you outside Australia Jessica Watson had a spectacular entrance to Sydney Harbour on Saturday 15th May. As an eleven year old she announced to her parents that she intended to sail around the world. As a sixteen year old she did, non-stop, alone and unassisted.

The business lessons, yes there are a number, come from not what she did, but how she did it.

Clear objective - she set a very clear, quite specific objective. There was nothing woolly about it. In fact Jessica's objective fitted the SMART rule for objectives very well; Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-based.

Do you have clearly defined, specific objectives for your business?

Planning - Every point on the trip was carefully planned with meticulous attention to detail. For example:

  • Food for 8 months - with a lot of help and advice from other sailors and a dietitian from the University of the Sunshine Coast;
  • The route and weather all the way, down to forecasting the speeds Ella's Pink Lady can do at particular angles to the wind in the weather forecasts along the route
  • Planning for emergencies so that she instinctively knew what needed to be done. It clicked into place with a completely cool head after a collision with a tanker before she had even started.

Do you pay meticulous attention to detail in your business?
Do you meticulously plan the year ahead?

Preparation - Jessica undertook meticulous preparation. She prepared herself including crewing on ocean going yachts at 14 years and took courses in a wide range of skills that could be needed on such a trip. Wikipedia provides the following summary:

"As training for her voyage, Watson crewed on a number of vessels, including Oceanswatch's Magic Roundabout on which she acted as skipper during a crossing of the Tasman Sea. Watson had over 10,000 nm of ocean sailing experience before departing on her round the world trip.
Her qualifications include:

  • RYA/ISAF Offshore Safety course (ISAF SR 6.01)
  • RYA Diesel Engine course
  • RYA Radar course
  • YAs Safety and Sea Survival certificate
  • OMTC issued Certificates of Competence for Apply First Aid
  • IMO compliant Elementary First Aid Table
  • Yachtmaster Ocean theory certificates
  • Radio operator's license"

I believe she also studied sail making in case she had to do any repairs, which she did.

Do you have all the technical, financial, management and marketing skills in your business you need to meet your objective, either through your own training or through employing the right people?

Perseverance - Success requires more than skills and ability. Yes you must have some talent and ability to succeed. But you must also have grit and determination.

After the collision with the tanker before Jessica started many said that the trip was too risky for a young girl. She was undeterred. In the South Atlantic near the Falkland Islands she suffered four knockdowns of her yacht in a severe storm with 10 metre waves and 70 knot winds. Nearing home, swells in the Great Australian Bight were up to 12 metres and she had three more knockdowns.

After analysing students at the US Military Academy, West Point, psychologist Angela Duckworth concluded that sustained, focussed application of talent over time - as opposed to raw talent, intelligence or educational attainment - was a vital determinant of success.*

Times can be tough in a small business. You need grit, determination and perseverance to get through.

Mentors - Jessica had two mentors who helped her plan the trip and advised on her preparation. Both had previously sailed around the world. They were in constant contact with her during the trip, which is allowable under the rules governing such records.

The importance in having a business mentor is increasingly recognised as being important to the success of individuals in business. It applies to small businesses as much as in large businesses.
Do you have a mentor, someone who has experienced the travails of business's turbulence to whom you can turn for advice and guidance?

Writing on the success of this slip of a girl Dr. Tim Hawkes said "Success in life is rarely available to the child who is allowed to squander significant time on the trivial, the shallow or the soporific." That could also be said of those who seek to sail small businesses to success.

* Source: The Australian, Monday 17th May 2010

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

How to edge your way to a BIG jump in profits

Have you ever been held back from making big step changes to you business, changes that you know should make a big difference, because it all seems too hard, too big a project to tackle, that takes too much of your already scarce time.

It's so easy to put off big step improvements in a business for all those reasons. And they are good reasons. If fact experience shows that big step changes are not only high risk, they often don't live up to their potential.

But don't despair. There's another way, a low risk way. It takes time, but it works almost every time.

That way is to start with small steps; incremental improvement we call it. You know the old Chinese saying; a journey of a thousand miles starts with the first step.

Small step, incremental improvements are usually of low complexity, involve little or no expenditure and are low risk. By definition their impact will be small. Small steps don't have to be perfect. They just have to be taken, and keep on being taken.

Relatively low skills are required. Only a low level of planning and analysis is required. They are the steps that can be carried out by the people in your business. You don't have to bring outsiders in to make them happen.

It's not the size of the step that is important but their cumulative effect over time. That's what makes the difference. Like compound interest the cumulative effect of successive small steps can make a significant impact on your business.

Look at a simple example. This is the 5% model. Assume you have sales of $1 million, a Gross Profit Margin of 35% and admin and overhead expenses of $350,000. An increase in sales of 5%, plus an increase in GP margin to 40%, together with a 5% reduction in expenses will increase your net profit by - wait for it - 50%.

No, you won't achieve that with 3 small steps, but what if you jotted down some ideas you could look at, say 3 or 4 ideas against each target 5%.

  • For example a 5% increase in sales may come from a specific marketing initiative, converting more enquiries, or a combination of both. How could you get a 5% increase in sales?

  • What about Gross Profits? Can you increase your prices just a little? Can you reduce your Cost of sales - buy just a little cheaper, are your freight costs worth looking at?

  • And so on for expenses.

Small changes to your marketing, together with small changes to your sales conversion, on top of small changes to your pricing, and small reductions in your expenses will make big differences to your profits.

If you had 3-4 ideas against each of sales, Gross Profits and Expenses you will have about 10 ideas to work from.

Now here is the tricky bit. Just take ONE. That's right, one. And just do it.

Don't even aim for perfection. That will hold you back. Don't wait for the right moment. There never is a right moment. Take your first step, and see what happens.

Then rinse and repeat. You've taken your first small step. Put the next foot forward, and then another.

If you would like to discuss any of these ideas just comment below.

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

Is it adding value to your business?

The vexed question of time came up in a recent discussion with a client. I call it a vexed question because it comes up well, all the time (sorry). How often have you complained, or heard someone else complain that they just haven't got enough time, that there isn't enough time during the day to do what they want to do, that they just need an extra hour or so.

In the case of my client they felt that the business wasn't going to go beyond a certain threshold because it relied on the owners working very hard on the technical side of the business. There was only a certain amount time they could put into the business. Because of that they didn't have enough time to devote to sales but they were good at administration and management, when they had the time.

It seems to me that the key issue in not just this case but for all small businesses is how to make the best use of time. That doesn't even get into the question of procrastination.

But how to judge "making the best use of time"? Is it a question of distinguishing between what is urgent and what is important?

Urgency is usually driven by deadlines, or a problem that has arisen. And because problems are often 'squeaky wheels' whether they be customer or people problems, they often get attention at the expense of what is important to the business.

Don't get me wrong, customer problems must be fixed, and fixed quickly if they are not to become an on-going sore for the business. But solving them doesn't necessarily have to involve you.

Time is the one thing we can't recreate. When it is gone, it is gone. In fact in my experience it is of even greater shortage for small business owners and managers than capital. So deciding what is important and must be done by you as owner and manager is critical. You need to concentrate on results for the business, not on being busy.

What is important ultimately comes down to the top goals you have set for your business. What are you trying to accomplish? Your actions and `projects should be aimed at achieving those goals. They are the ones that add value to your business.

If you want to try a really scary exercise, work out how much time you spend each day adding value to your business. Paul Lemberg (http://www.paullemberg.com/blog) has conducted extensive formal and informal surveys on this question and reckons that an average it is about two and half hours, about 25% of your day.

If you are somewhere around the average then about 75% of your day is spent doing unimportant things, things that don't really contribute to your achieving your goals, adding value to your business. Perhaps you have to ask yourself on a regular basis what are you giving up to do whatever that wasteful activity is.

Perhaps you should then ask yourself whether you should continue doing it.

(If you would like a "time waste" sheet template to use for this exercise This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

So how much time do you spend creating value? If you would like the challenge here are a few steps, courtesy of Paul Lemberg, that you can take.

1. What are your top 3 goals? There could be more than 3, but don't make it more than 5. List them in the order of importance.

2. What are the critical success factors in your business that have most to do with realising your goals? Each goal will have one or 2 things that you do in your business that have most to do with reaching those goals.

3. What do you do to impact theses goals most strongly and quickly? On which of those critical success factors do you put your time and attention? What do you do on a daily basis that drives those critical success factors.

4. Is what you am doing right now the most important thing you can be going in creating value in your business right now? Is what you are doing aligned with one or more of those critical success factors? That's the exercise above. How much time do you spend creating value?

So here's how you change that.

  • Increase the time you spend creating value by 50% - say an extra hour and a quarter each day.

  • Only work on high value work in that extra 50% of your time.

  • Get somebody else to handle the trivial things you are letting go.h value work

There's the extra hour or so you need, and it will add value to your business.

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

Nor is it a strategy

For that matter "We'll have to wait and see" is not a strategy either. I was reminded of the above quotation when talking to someone about the problem they were having in their business. The problem was essentially a lack of sales.

To be fair, whilst their business had not been constantly growing, it usually received sufficient sales to keep it busy. As you might guess, they are a very reactive business. The orders come in; they fulfill them and hope to get the chance to quote on more.

They presume or hope that the next month, quarter or year will turn out like the last - same issues, same outcomes.

What if it doesn't? When will the penny drop? Quite probably when it is too late!

Too late because they are totally dependant on the actions of others, on events beyond their knowledge and control. There was no thought that they should try and do something. They prefer the comfort of inaction than actually trying to do something to change the situation.

Unless they take action, nothing is going to happen.

What actions could they take? Well, they could cut costs. That's what larger firms do. However, like most small businesses their cost structure is fairly lean so there is little to be gained there. In fact trying to do something in the cost cutting area could even further damage the business.

The alternative would be to try and bring in some more sales, to actually try and market their business's capabilities.

Recently I read of one sales initiative they could copy, just by way of an example. In this real-life case study the businessman sent out postcards to a list of less than 400 people. The postcards were simple, all-text with no photos. The text had a benefit laden headline, an offer, and a deadline. The cost to the company was $1,500. It achieved only three responses and just one sale.

I can almost feel your shock. That effort and money for one sale. But you have to consider the return on investment (ROI) from that little marketing effort. That one customer has stayed a customer for 8 years and spends up to $80,000 per year.

As my friend Andrew Young says "You don't need luck, you need action." Action is the foundation to success. There are undoubtedly risks and costs to action, but they are far less than the ultimate risks of doing nothing.

My correspondent doesn't have to wait and see. In fact they should not.

They should try something and see if it brings a result, even if it is only one sale. No action, no hope."

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

That leads to success

It appears some sales processes are universal, not learnt by studying some ‘expert’ but by testing over time to find what works and what doesn’t. There’s a little aside here: how many of you test your marketing or sales processes to find out what works and what doesn’t?

But back to the point of this blog. My wife and I are on a long anticipated trip to India. And rather than tripping around, wandering into one monument or another without any idea of the story behind it, and wanting to avoid the boredom of a busload of babbling tourists we opted for individual guided tours of each destination. And very worthwhile it has been too.

But there is another side to tours. Whether you are with the babblers or on an individual tour, sooner or later you will be guided to an outlet where the wares will be demonstrated (with no obligation to buy of course) and ‘sold’ to you.

Now in some ways this is not a bad thing. On our experience at least you are likely to be taken to a reputable place with quality products, rather than left to the mercies of sidewalk hawkers. Be aware of course that your guide will be on a commission for anything you buy, at least 2 – 3% as one guide told us in a moment of transparency.

The sales lesson was in how the sale is achieved, a nine step process which leads to YES.

Firstly comes education. The skill and expertise of the craftsman is demonstrated, working in the traditional way to make the product. Authentic craftsmen and women from the villages where this work is done.

Secondly you are asked to appreciate how the skill is applied and how such skills are a dying art in this rapidly changing world (build up the scarcity).

Thirdly see the variety of finished products that are available (more education, but also seeking to identify your point of interest).

At some point the Law of Reciprocity is fed into the process. This is where a sense of obligation is created so that you will start to feel at some point to you need to reciprocate by buying something, just something small of course. There’s always a touch of reciprocity from the demonstration as well. At some stage a tea, coffee or even a beer is offered, no charge of course, “accept a little hospitality” building on the Law.

Then their USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is demonstrated – just why these products are so different from anything that you can buy elsewhere – the fifth step.

So the tipping point process is started, the sixth step. The first products that are demonstrated are well within your price range and your interest starts to be engaged. You can afford that product of course.

Graduation - the seventh step. Having got your engagement, more products are bought out, each of even higher quality and skill, and a higher price of course. So you start to finger the material, or whatever the product is, hold them up to the light, step back and examine.

Touch it, feel it, picture it in your home. There is nothing like engaging the imagination, which of course is what every tourist brochure does with its photographs – can’t you see yourself here, having that experience, the eighth step.

By now you are well past the moment of that low priced product you initially considered, the one that took you past the tipping point. The question is no longer whether you are going to buy, but what you are going to buy – the ninth step.

Yes, it worked on us, even as I admired the process. But why did it work?

As a process it works because it has been tested and improved over time, a long time. And it mirrors the process so many marketing or sales gurus will tell you to follow. But of course they developed their expertise is in a completely different market. It just happens to be a universal process that works.

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

That's a question I often get asked by clients. And of course there is no easy answer. In my experience for most small businesses there's not even a process by which they decide.

More often than not, SMEs equate advertising with marketing and base their budget on a combination of what they think they can afford and what they spent last year. Rarely is it based on the results they wish to achieve.

While you shouldn't spend more on marketing than the returns warrant, haphazard budgeting for marketing will produce little return for the investment over time.

Before moving on to a process you could, or should, follow I can tell you the average expenditure of small businesses in various industries in Australia according to financial benchmarking studies. For example:

  • Auto accessories & spare parts dealers - 2.61%
  • Auto Electricians - 1.73%
  • Beauticians - 2.82%
  • Bed & Breakfast - 7.0%
  • Building Contractors - 0.18%
  • Cabinet Makers - 0.82%
  • Computer & Phone, Sales & repair - 1.55%
  • Plumbing Contractors - 0.55%
  • Smash Repairers - 0.90%
  • Metal Fabricators/Engineering Works - 0.57%

There's a fair bit of variation across these industries.

Are these a good guide? Well, probably not, because as mentioned above the expenditure is probably not the result of a planned process.
Some quick research on Google suggested all US companies; on average, regardless of size and position in the market, spend 9% of revenue on marketing. That's not surprising when you consider very well performing companies like Microsoft (21%), Adobe (33%) and 1-800 Flowers (33%) spend a lot more.

Could their marketing expenditure have something to do with their performance?

So marketing, and lots of it, may well be absolutely critical, and you need to develop systems you can use for new marketing campaigns.
An alternative approach to picking a figure, whether it be industry averages or past expenditure is to work at what you actually need to achieve your objectives.

For example: An objective of an extra $100,000 in sales means;
1. How many/ what kind of sales are needed to achieve that number?
2. How many leads do you need to achieve those sales?
3. What marketing tools (frequency/reach) will be required to achieve those leads?
4. How much will it likely cost to generate those leads?

Of course that means having some data on your conversion rates from enquiries to sales, and responses to the different marketing media you use.

To quote from Small Business - Big Opportunity" Sensis in partnership with Rob Hartnett "A common oversight made by many small business owners is that they simply don't measure their advertising. Even fewer actually know what they want to advertise."

What you allocate for marketing and which media you use depends on your business, your customers, your location, and your industry. But at least make the effort to plan what you want to achieve. Ineffective marketing is indeed very expensive.

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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

The business year has now well and truly begun, and no doubt you will be settling down to making it a bigger and better year than last year.

A recent survey suggested the top priorities for Australian small businesses this year were:

  • Finding new clients and customers (58%)
  • Growing my business (33%)
  • Gaining worklife balance (8%)

That's worth thinking about but I would be more interested in hearing about the issues that might be troubling you about the year ahead. What are the issues that you feel you need to be wary about, that could have an adverse impact on your business?

I can tell you what is concerning some small businesses, in Australia at least. The Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA) and Telstra Business conducted a poll of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to gauge their expectations about the economy and their own business in the year ahead.

You may not be surprised about the results. It is the things that are outside their control that concerned most SMEs surveyed.

Let me quote from a newspaper report on the results:

"Interest rates, a carbon tax, the cost and availability of finance, changes to the Australian industrial relations system all weigh on the minds of respondents, to different degrees.

The survey also revealed a lot of the pain that SMEs are going through at the moment.

Only 26% of respondents said that their business had improved in the last 6 months, while 39% said that they expected theirs to improve in the next 6 months, although the same businesses were far more positive about a recovery in the economy overall."

Higher interest rates and the cost of obtaining finance to expand were the top issues of concern. That is interesting given the priorities quoted above from the other survey. People want to find new customers and grow but feel they may not be able to find the money to do so.

At the same time they believe the economy is more likely to recover than them, perhaps because of those finance concerns.

What about you? What are your concerns? Is the cost and availability of finance your major concern, is it finding the right staff, their costs, or is it your market and the willingness of customers to buy? Those surveyed seemed to think there were opportunities for growth but are you as confident?

Certainly for small businesses outside Australia the picture may be more problematic. Reports I read suggest potential problems in the US and UK but Canada?

Please click on the "Add Comment" button below right and let me know what you are thinking.


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© Copyright 2010 Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective

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