By Evan Carmichael on February 2nd, 2013
Stan Prokop is a Platinum author on EvanCarmichael.com – to view his articles click here. He is also the Founder of 7 Park Avenue Financial. We asked him for his #1 Tip for Entrepreneurs, here is what he said:
Our #1 Tip For Entrepreneurs
If we had to share just one tip for entrepreneurs both in Canada and the U.S. we suppose that it would be to convince owner owner / entrepreneur that it’s not always about sales and revenue growth. Don’t get us wrong, we love growing companies and profits, it’s just that you need two other things to get there – focused management and the right amount and type of financing.
Entrepreneurs that we often meet when we’re out in the real world on a day to day basis are very focused on ‘ doing things ‘, including generating more revenue! That’ a very healthy thing to do, but must be balanced with a lot of other challenges that fall under that business umbrella.
Rarely do we meet an owner or partnership that has balanced skills in both sales and the functional aspects of your business – i.e. finance, production, etc.
Not to overstate but if you’re an entrepreneur who is in fact all about sales… well that’s ok – (We’re pretty sure you sold lemonade or had a paper route early on!) but we just hope you open to attract talent and advisors that can help you with operational and financing problems that might seem unsolvable, perhaps even posing a risk to your business?
Recognizing your sales strengths and promoting them is great. In fact we’re jealous. But we maintain it’s as important to ensure you have the potential ‘ weak spots ‘ covered off.
What are those weak spots? Some important ones, ones that can take down your business include:
Manpower / People Issues
Product and Service Issues
The good news is that successful entrepreneurs often have the ability, if they have the help and resources, to fix a lot of things pretty quickly. You’re more nimble than General Motors I guess is what we’re trying to say!
Many of the entrepreneurs we meet that are in fact very successful at sales and revenue growth often do compete very successfully with large corporations. In effect they have their ‘back shop ‘ together, and have carved out great niches in market segments they can excel in.
Another way to demonstrate our key point today is simply that you need an overall strategy, not just a sales strategy. That includes selling more… of course, but also includes getting the human, financial and other resources you need in place to be successful. By being able to foresee future obstacles you’ll be 100% ahead of the competition, even the ‘ big boys ‘ you compete with.
In some cases the entrepreneur often has to forsake short term profits for long term gains – for example investing into expansion or new markets via your marketing and sales skills.
We’re reminded of the expression ‘ not seeing the forest for the trees ‘. Our advice, take an objective look at your business and assess the risk of not addressing some of the key issues outside of just sales and revenue growth. You’ll be glad you did.
Stan Prokop is the founder of 7 Park Avenue Financial . The firm specializes in business financing for Canadian companies in the areas of working capital , asset based lending, SR & ED tax credit financing, equipment financing, franchise financing and banking .
Tags: Canada, challenges, entrepreneur, finance production, financing entrepreneurs, functional aspects, general motors, lemonade, manpower, paper route, park avenue, partnership, platinum, profits, prokop, real world, risk, stan, successful entrepreneurs, umbrella