David Rovinski and Terry Misfeldt from Fluidity Business Planning Group are co-chairs of the De Pere Area Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Development Committee recently wrote this about positioning your company for success in 2012:
The first step is to be honest with yourself and develop a position statement for where your business is today – right now. You can do this yourself by taking a few hours, finding a quiet place for some reflection, and thinking about the status of your company through the end of 2011.
Consider your sales figures. Are they where they should be or is there room for improvement? Is your sales force capable of meeting, or exceeding, expectations on a consistent basis?
Think about your advertising. Has it produced the results you expected when you invested in it? Were you able to track new business that came in? How did that new volume compare to what you spent?
Look at your finances overall. How far out are your receivables? What’s your cash flow situation look like? Have your margins remained the same? For how long? Is your business growing every year?
The second step in positioning your company for success is digesting the information you’ve accumulated from your evaluation and coming up with solutions to change the less than favorable situations. In most cases, when you take the time to think things through and realize something is problematic, you have taken a huge step toward solving that problem merely because you’ve identified what it is. You will find, though, that there are times when you are unable to see the problem and may need outside help to take a look at where you are. Often, that’s because you’re smack dab in the middle of it all. What might not be obvious to you could be crystal clear to an independent, third party observer (I3PO). You obviously want to capitalize on the positive trends and enhance them as much as you can.
The third step is laying out the plans to move forward. It may be in the same direction but with new goals and objectives, or in a totally different direction with more of a focus on the consumer. After all, every business should be focused on the customer. We often lose sight of that rudimentary philosophy when we become embroiled in the daily toil of the work environment.
The key is to have an action plan, and then act on that plan. The first quarter of 2012 is gone, so acting now could mean the difference between a mediocre year and a sensational year for your business.
This is a organization that was referred to me by friend & colleague, Paul Linzmeyer. I looked through their website and found it to be a good source of information that is as free of bias as most I have seen. I subscribed to the newsletter and today I bring you some snippets from the 9/23/10 issue. Yes, it is 2 weeks old … it was a busy month!!
The group is called the Small Business Majority and their tagline is: Small Businesses Driving Practical Policy. I don’t know about you, but I am more than ready for a return to reasonableness and calm, well-thought out conversation. This group hits those notes for me. I hope you find it of interest as well.
Please let me hear what you think!
Healthcare reform: six months later
Six months ago, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was passed. A number of provisions take effect today (9/23), including new rules forbidding insurance companies from denying coverage to children under 19 with preexisting conditions, and the requirement that all insurance plans must provide free preventive care such as annual check-ups, mammograms and colonoscopies. Policies that already took effect this year include tax credits for small businesses, along with a reinsurance plan for seniors that will provide them with much-needed financial relief so early retirees can get affordable care.
Small Business Majority has spent the summer educating small business owners, organizations and policymakers about the new law, and moving into fall, plans on continuing an information campaign about this important and complex legislation. Most recently, Small Business Majority National Policy Director Terry Gardiner and National Outreach and Government Affairs Manager Rhett Buttle held a call for small business owners and organizations, where they answered questions on and explained the details of a form released by the IRS to help small businesses determine their tax credits for next year’s tax returns.
From their newsletter, links to articles of interest:
Tax credit bonanza for small businesses from CNN Money on 9/22/10
Lightening the Health Care Load for Small Businesses from The New York Times on 9/17/10
Report: Massachusetts deprived of 40k green jobs from the Boston Business Journal on 9/14/10
What You Need to Know About the Small-Business Bill from Entrepreneur on 9/13/10 (yes, this bill has come up a lot lately!)
Tax credit for health premiums target small firms from The Chicago Tribune on 8/16/10
From their “Resources” section:
A report by the Commonwealth Fund, released on Sept. 2, found that the small business tax credits will reduce health insurance premiums, and the exchange, once implemented, will expand coverage for millions of workers employed by small businesses.
The Kaiser Family Foundation just revealed the impact of increasing healthcare costs on small business owners and their employees in a recent survey.
Want to learn about business in the De Pere Area? Check out our Work Section …