Other business authors discuss why businesses fail. I prefer to focus on the positive: businesses that thrive and why they become successful.
Celebrating Success! Fourteen Ways to a Successful Company discussed the fourteen principles that successful companies implement. The book is the result of interviewing–in detail–nearly 50 successful Northeast Ohio companies, talking with hundreds of other companies, and testing the results with clients.
There is not enough room in this article to discuss all fourteen attributes, so I will focus on the top three principles: attitude of the business owner, having a sound business strategy and the value of discipline.
The attitude of the business owner is the single most important principle described in the book. The owner must accept 100% of the responsibility for the results of the business. When responsibility is accepted, action can be taken to make the necessary changes to accomplish the desired results.
When success is achieved, the business owner understands that it requires others to become successful as well. These owners are generous in giving credit to other people within the organization. Without exception, the most successful business owners understand it is all about people: hiring and retaining the right people, eliminating ineffective people, and providing the necessary resources for employees to master their tasks.
Having a sound business strategy is next. The strategy does not have to be a 60-page, single-spaced, complex plan; one page will do. However, the business strategy does need to be well thought out, carefully crafted and well executed. The business strategy will define and drive the activities and behaviors the organization must execute to become successful. If you do not have a business strategy, the organization becomes like a ship without a rudder – it can’t be steered – it just goes in circles. A business strategy should include such things as: a financial plan, marketing differentiators, product strategy, and employee retention strategy (just to name a few).
The other two attributes become much more effective when discipline is in place. Discipline can be defined as “staying the course, ” “not losing focus, ” or executing the strategy. ” The most successful companies understand the value of discipline and they work hard maintain the course defined by the business strategy.
A poorly crafted business plan that is well executed is far superior to a well-crafted business plan the sits on the shelf.
Discipline means: not to overreact to market changes, stay focused on your core markets, and measuring success as defined in the financial plan.
If your business addresses these three principles discussed above, and choose to embrace the other principles documented in the book, predictable success is your only possible outcome.
Ronald Finklestein Small Business Success Expert AKRIS 330-990-0788 http://www.yourbusinesscoach.net