21 Jun

Bringing Your Business Out Of Its Slump

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 21.06.13 by John Meloche

slumpIn yesterday’s blog, we began to take a look at a UK-based article from The Guardian, written by entrepreneur, Gem Misa. In it, she explains that dealing with setbacks is a part of business. However, business owners who allow for pitfalls to bury their companies are missing out on the many benefits that come with strong senses of perseverance. It’s impossible for things to always go your way.

Overcoming hardships is the best way to learn how to be a master in your field. Having had tough experiences herself, Misa writes of a few ways that business owners can strive past the strife and become champions in their respective markets. In today’s blog, we’ll pick up where we left off yesterday and peruse through a few more helpful tips on how to bounce back from bad times.

Spend modestly – if you can do it yourself, do it. Sometimes, you just have to get things done yourself. Especially if you’re struggling to come up with the start-up costs to run your new business, you may not be able to hire staff immediately. In many cases, entrepreneurs are their own secretaries, PR representatives, promo directors and blog writers. The key is not to spend too much too early.

Get out of your comfort zone. Some business owners get themselves into trouble simply because they are too lazy or impatient to handle the so-called boring parts of the business. “You must remember that this is your business,” writes Misa, “and any hiccups or failures can only be blamed on yourself.” Understanding all aspects of the business will help you in the long run. Your staff shouldn’t be able to outsmart you anyway!

When someone says no, get creative. You’ve heard the advice “never take ‘no’ for an answer” before, right? Same rule applies here. Misa suggests that you not take it personally, and instead become more personable. To get her own salad dressing business off the ground, she sent summer picnic baskets to retailers who wouldn’t return her calls. The result: booked business meetings!

Learn how to harness the power of the crowd. You may need additional funding along the way to grow your business. In fact, you definitely will. But that doesn’t mean the banks will be willing to support you. You may need other sources of financing so prepare to join forces with sponsors or other businesses that may be willing to help promote you if you promote them. Again, being creative will be important.

These tips can help any business owner in any sector. Take the Toronto Blue Jays, for example. It’s no secret that the Synergy Marketing staff is comprised of some big fans of the team. After all, our offices are headquartered in Toronto. So the excitement for the season to begin was at an all-time high this past off-season. With many new acquisitions, the Jays seemed poised to become champions for the first time in twenty years.

And then the season started. The Jays began to experience a wild and unfortunate combination of injuries and poor play. As a result, they have been a losing team all season long. But wait! As of today, the Blue Jays are on an 8-game winning streak and seem to be on their way to even greater success. Never say die, people. It’s not over until it’s over. With this attitude, you’ll be the best at bringing your business out of its slumps.

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20 Jun

Perseverance Produces Champions

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 20.06.13 by John Meloche

champsWell, tonight’s the night! It all comes down to Game 7 in the NBA Finals pitting the defending champion Miami Heat against the San Antonio Spurs. No doubt, basketball fans are still in awe after the incredible back-and-forth match up that was Game 6 this past Tuesday night. The Spurs seemed destined to capture their 5th championship.

Near the end of the fourth quarter, Heat fans were leaving the building under the impression that their season had been lost. Then Ray Allen hit a three-pointer heard across the world. The game went to overtime only to see the Heat climb back from the dead to win and force a seventh game. So what’s the lesson in all of this? Never leave a game before the final buzzer! But there is another lesson to be learned as well.

You can never give up. In business, we all come to points in our careers when we think that it’s impossible to succeed. Self-doubt and a lack of motivation to reach new heights can kill a business. As a business owner, it’s up to you to dig deep and find ways out of seemingly impossible-to-escape holes. Just a few years ago, Canada was facing a recession.

Naturally, many businesses were affected and undoubtedly some had to close their doors. Others, however, persevered and are more successful today than ever before. So what is the secret to overcoming the odds? According to Gem Misa from UK-based, The Guardian, you have to plan for curve balls. In other words, prepare yourself against your worst-case scenario.

Having started her own company, Misa became all too familiar with financial difficulty. But through her experiences, she found that it’s important to leave room for unplanned expenses and potential pitfalls. She lists a number of helpful tips that can help entrepreneurs avoid such pitfalls – or at worst, help dig themselves out of holes. We’d like to share a few.

Learn how to adapt. As mentioned, there are bound to be bumps in the road. You would be wise to expect them. You can write a business plan, says Misa, but it’s important to draft a Plan B. There may be issues that you didn’t think of that you’ll have to address along the way. Be prepared to revisit your plan and make changes if things don’t go the way you originally expected.

Make room for errors (emotionally and financially). Writes Misa, “When putting together your business plan, you would normally list your sources of income, compare it against a list of expenses, and from there you would work out your profit…Make sure to leave room for those unplanned expenses and attempt to make a profit, or at least break even, on the most conservative and even the worst case sales scenarios.”

In tomorrow’s blog, we’ll continue to take a look at Misa’s tips. Tonight, however, the team that has learned the most from their hardships will likely be crowned the 2013 NBA Champions. If you’re looking to be a champion in your industry, you’ll have to learn how to bounce back from crushing defeats. Here’s hoping that you won’t have to suffer too many along the way.

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