Q & A

Work & Kid Balance

Dear Doc Answer:

“Do not brood over your past mistakes and failures, as this will only fill your mind with grief, regret and depression. Do not repeat them in the future”. Swami Sivananda Indian Yoga master

It is easy to be inundated by day-to-day demands and lose sight of your important objectives. To be able to make choices, you will need to have clear, short-term and long-term goals. Spend some time at the beginning of each week or month, evaluating and revising these goals. What do you want to accomplish this year? This month? This week? Successful time management involves making decisions based on an understanding of your goals, which may include time with your family.

Most time-management programs stress the importance of prioritising your objectives. Make a ‘to do’ …

Referral Networking

Dear Doc Answer:

“To some, a referral is merely a name. However, a referral is actually much more than this! A referral is the authorization to use the influence attached to the referrer.” Barry Graham Monro Over 90% of all business enterprises in Australia are small to medium in size. Many rely on passing trade or advertising to get work.

However, many have found that for them, the real power of business growth lies in word of mouth advertising. This powerful means of trade can originate from either satisfied clients, or from other business entities who have their own customer base and business contacts.

Business referral clubs have been around for many years and can be a good and quick way to develop your business. In South East Queensland, …

Change through PMA

Dear Doc Answer:

“50% of business success is attitude and 50% is the right strategy. Business people think how to grow a business. Self-employed people think how to get their next pay check.” CEO Business Advisory Services   The current culture of your firm has grown over the years by the approach of the baby boomers who have been running your firm for the last 30+ years. This has been to work hard (attitude) and accept the consequences of their decisions (strategy). Today we have Generation X and Y who want to have a life as well as success. To achieve this aim, they must not only change their work practices but also change the culture of the whole firm.

The question is: “Can this be achieved?” The answer …

Professional service blues

Dear Doc Answer:

“Your customers don’t care how much you know. They want to know how much you care.” Matt Clarkson MD Megahits Media   I have been asked this question many times over the years by people in your profession, by people working in the ‘wellness’ industry and consultants in general. They can see that I and other consultants like me seem to have clients that not only stay with them but are loath to leave and are their biggest source of new work.

The main problem it seems to me, is that many ‘professional’ people try to offer the best service that they believe their clients are looking for, without fully understanding what their client really want.

We know that our clients are usually intelligent people who can …

How do I grow my busines?

Dear Doc Answer:

“Research in the field of ‘cultural due diligence’ has shown that whether it is a legal firm, an international business or small growing business, it is quite clear that the culture of the firm is a consequence of attitudes coming from the ‘spiritual’ leader of that organisation.” David Harding

The fifth Law of success is this: “What you say is what you will do”. So long as you say to yourself that you cannot get passed the $300,000 barrier that will be the case.

I have been taking people passed their glass ceilings for over twenty years and the secret in essence is to do the following.

1 Decide what turnover you want to achieve. 2 Workout what combination of products or services and price levels …

To Factor or not to Factor

Dear Doc Answer:

“Winners can tell you where they are going, what they plan to do along the way, and who will be sharing the adventure with them.” Denis Watley

Factoring has been around for over 40 years and has developed and changed as the needs of businesses have changed over that time. Unfortunately, some people remember that originally it was an expensive way of borrowing that was used almost exclusively by companies in cashflow crises and so had many casualties.

There are two main business situations that benefit from this service. The first is labour hire firms who must pay wages each week but have to wait 40 to 60 days to be paid. The margins are good and therefore it is acceptable to pay between 1 to 4 …

To delegate or not

Dear Doc Answer:

“Once you recognise that the primary purpose of your business is to serve your life and not vice versa, you can then go to work on your business rather than in it.” Michael E. Gerber You are quite right. I know a number of organisations who delegated themselves out of a job and then out of their business, so you must take care.

With proper planning and training, you can minimise the risk involved. First of all you have to get over the following feelings:

1 Fear of losing control 2 Regret of giving up jobs you enjoy 3 Belief that you can cope with the job yourself

 Delegation does not mean giving someone a task to perform, it means giving them a result to achieve, for …

Disorganised Manager

Dear Doc Answer:

“You are more likely to overcome challenges, if you have learned in advance what is expected and how to respond. That is why training at all levels is critical to the success of any organisation.” Allen Sheppard

You are expecting the GM to know what to do. Did the job description have a documented succession plan and business structure so he knew what he had to do, or was he supposed to make it up as he went along?

Ask your GM if he knows why he is there. If he answers that it is “to assist the organisation to achieve its objectives”, then you are half way there. All you need to do then is document those objectives and how to achieve them and you should …

Sales v manufacturing

Dear Doc Answer:

“The problems that exist in the world today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them.” Albert Einstein (1879 – 1955)

It may be seen from the information I have received from you, that you have a strong cash flow base with which to develop your continuing growth. You are clearly using the same thinking that was used on the commencement of the firm, with your sales to production plan.

The underlying problem of so many firms is that the way they organised the business when they first started, is no longer relevant in today’s environment. This is why successful organisations are under-performing, in financial or productivity difficulties today.

In nearly every case, the root cause is not that the wrong things …

Business culture change

Dear Doc Answer:

“Research in the field of ‘cultural due diligence’ has shown that whether it is a legal firm, an international business or small growing business, it is quite clear that the culture of the firm is a consequence of attitudes coming from the ‘spiritual’ leader of that organisation.” David Harding

This is where the saying that ‘you have to work ON your business’ comes to mind. The fact is that as a business develops and grows, so the job of the CEO changes. You are no longer the technician, but have become the manager or the manager of managers. What you have been doing is delegating without training your managers. The result is that they are doing what they thought you did. They are not doing what you …

Growing business

Dear Doc Answer:

“The reason most people never reach their goals is that they don’t define them, or ever seriously consider them as believable or achievable. Winners can tell you where they are going, what they plan to do along the way, and who will be sharing the adventure with them.” Denis Watley

You are quite right to be concerned, as one person cannot be expected to do everything in a growing business. If you are excited by the potential of your growth, then you also need to stand back and give yourself short, medium and long term goals. Once you have them and know how to take the road to achieving those goals, then you can enjoy the journey and smell the roses as you progress.

A growing …

Garage Mechanic

Dear Doc Answer:

“Only the client will pay our costs and provide our profits. So we have to conduct all business planning from the client’s point of view.” Ian Carlzon (Former CEO of Swedish airline SAS)

This advice is relevant for all service providers, whether a garage mechanic, fitness club, wellness centre, physiotherapist, a pool shop or computer service.

When potential clients bring their car in for service, that is what they want and what they should be offered. To be a successful service provider, it is important to build a trusting relationship with clients and have them perceive that you care about them as well as their car. Whilst competitors may know how to trick one off customers, your aim should be to build a rapport with all clients …