95% of small businesses fail within the first five years. And 50% fail within the first year.
And a big reason for these staggering numbers is poor business management skills, which result in bad decisions, inefficient processes, and missed opportunities for finding a place in the market.
That’s why for any business owner who wants to increase the likelihood of success, best business management practices should be a top priority.
But how can you ensure that you make the right choices about your marketing, sales, employees, production, and other aspects of the business?
To help you find answers, let’s explore 3 essential strategies for making your business management more effective.
Technological advances have had a massive impact on how companies of all sizes run their business. But in recent decades, that has become especially true for small businesses, who now have access to cutting-edge tools and software that automate various tasks, provide more data, and allow them to compete with enterprise-level companies in the way that they operate.
But all of that will only matter if you actually implement the available technology and use it to streamline various processes in your company.
For instance, if you and your employees need to track business expenses, you can use expense software to automate the entire process. Automating your company’s expense management processes reduces costs, eliminates errors, and saves a tremendous amount of time.
You can also use marketing automation tools to run successful campaigns virtually on autopilot, freeing up time for more valuable interactions with customers, idea development, and growing the company.
There are dozens of areas where business automation has had a huge impact, so you should look into streamlining as many processes as possible if you want to actually have time to manage your business.
Listen to Feedback
One of the hardest things to do for a business owner is to accept criticism. Whether it’s unhappy customers or disgruntled employees, it can often seem like people are unreasonable and making unfair demands.
However, successful entrepreneurs understand the importance of listening to feedback, even when it’s unpleasant. That’s the only way to eliminate blindspots about your business and discover glaring issues before they can cause irreversible damage.
One of the best ways to discover the key issues you need to prioritize is to run employee surveys. They are incredibly simple to put together but can offer you powerful insights about what’s wrong and what you could do better.
In some cases, employee surveys can even help you discover unique opportunities for growth or innovative methods for running various parts of the business. After all, your employees are the ones who are in the trenches every day, so they can often have unique ideas for running the business more effectively.
You can also run customer surveys where you ask them various questions about what they think of your company, what they’d like to see improved, and what made them choose to work with you. This, together with employee surveys, should provide you with plenty of ideas for improving your business and implementing better management practices.
Make Data-Driven Decisions
The quality of the decisions you make on a daily basis will ultimately determine how successful your company can be. And since technology allows tracking almost any metric about your business, it’s now possible to base every decision on hard data, dramatically increasing the chances of positive outcomes.
But how can you implement data-driven business management practices?
The first step is identifying the types of goals you want to achieve using data. Each decision you make can be based on data, so by identifying goals, you can start looking at what type of data you would need to enhance your decision-making process.
You also need to have a process for drawing conclusions from the data you collect. Using tools to collect, analyze, and present the data in a visually appealing way can all help you and your team to quickly understand the context of the decision and increase the likelihood of making the right choice.
Business management can be the difference-maker in how successful your company can become. But to make impactful change in how you run your business, you need to not just rely on your own judgment but embrace technology and the feedback of others.
Only by listening to your employees and customers, streamlining processes, and finding ways to leverage data into making better decisions can you stay competitive in your market and make gradual improvements that amount to big change over the long term.