Transform Your Business
Neil Bromage has run his own small business and is a freelance business writer working on a range of newspapers including The Times, Sunday Times, Telegraph and Financial Mail on Sunday. This book is based on a wide range of columns and Q&As written and answered by Neil for Business Link over a number of years. He is based near Preston, Lancs.
Moving a business into that next stage in its development can be problematic. The following five steps may just help you to become the next Richard Branson.
Dare to dream
First you need a vision. Most great entrepreneurs have had one. Tom Watson Snr’s goal was to transform his tiny company into an international corporation – it became IBM. It’s easy to think T couldn’t do that, it’s just wishful thinking’, and easier to get lost in the how-to of it all. The minute you start thinking like this stop and go back to the big picture – you don’t need the burden of reality whilst you’re dreaming.
Define the vision
Write down what your business will look like. Imagine yourself arriving there in five years time and describe what you see – the car park, the building, the people, the customers. Consider what products or services you will offer, how big it will be, what your own role in it will become.
Think outside the box
Don’t restrain yourself with narrow thinking. Your initial idea and concept may be simple but try to think how you can expand it to offer other associated services or products. Wilkinson, for instance, moved from swords to razors!
Join the dots
The clearer your vision the easier it is to make it happen. Tom Watson Snr said that once he had a picture of how IBM would look and act he realised that unless they began to act like that from the beginning they would never get there. Treat challenges positively and you’ll be surprised at how they can become opportunities.
Make it happen
The best entrepreneurs often write their business plans down on one sheet of A4 paper. Spilt the paper into four sections. In the first, write where you arc now. In the second, where you would like to be. In the third, what needs to be done to get you there. And finally, in the fourth, who will do it all and when.
Author: What advice would you give to someone about to take their first employee?