Wednesday, June 29, 2005

What Business Model Should You Follow?

What is a good business plan model to follow for small businesses?
The simplest business plan model to follow for small businesses is one that works for you, according to SCORE, Counselors To America's Small Business. A business plan should be a working document that not only addresses the questions Who, What, Where, When, How and How Much, but also acts as a monitoring dashboard that warns you of impending danger. The plan should be written in a clear concise manner with validated facts. The plan will convey your abilities as owner of the business to plan and communicate effectively.
The elements of your plan may require time to properly research and evaluate your business ideas. This means gathering data, evaluating your concepts, assessing the market for your products and services and studying the competition. Your financials and sales projections must equal your written words in the other segments of your plan; otherwise potential investors and lenders will loose interest in your business immediately.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Time For Annual Business Checkup

As the weather improves, many people are eager to get outside and in shape, but companies also can benefit from a little conditioning. Robert Half Management Resources has identified five key questions for small-business owners to address when conducting their annual business checkup.
1. Is it time to update your financial systems?
Outdated financial systems can hinder business performance. Many companies that postponed major systmes initiatives in the past are now making them a priority.
2. Does your company have a 3-, 5- and 10-year business plan?
Short-term planning won't yield long-term results. Determine if you have the appropriate intellectual capital to drive your company's future growth.
3. Is your business secure?
Email viruses, worms, unauthorized systems access and data theft are among the many threats that can leave a company vulnerable. Businesses should have adequate security systems in place and technical support staff available to implement the necessary safeguards.
4. Are you holding onto your best people?
As the economy gains momentum, don't be surprised if your top performers get other offers. Offering competitive compensation packages, as well as creative benefits, will help your organization recruit and retain the most qualified employees.
5. Are you losing market share to the competition?
Continually stay abreast of news or developments from similar firms in your local market. Ask clients and business associates how they feel the company measures up to the competition and solicit ideas to improve the firm's products, services and customer satisfaction ratings.