Sunday, September 20, 2015

Business Management

Sharpen Business Communication

Communication is at the core of all our relationships, both business and personal. Business communication needs to keep pace with the warp speed digital communication that bombards us with messages we often did not ask for and are irrelevant to our business activity.
Here are some important tips to improve communication and break through all that digital noise and allow us to reach the intended audience.

Pitching for Business?
- Ask the right questions by understanding your customer’s needs.
- Communicate professionally. Make sure written communication is proofread and has an appropriate signature. Make sure phones are answered professionally and people speak clearly.
- Schedule and prepare well. Make sure you provide potential clients with adequate uninterrupted time to speak. Prepare an agenda and share it before the meeting so all parties can prepare.
- Communication is a two way street. Express your ideas clearly but be sure to listen. Silence can be a powerful communication tool.  Ask good questions to show your interest and involvement with the customer.
- Follow-up in writing. Give your customer an overview of the meeting and ask for feedback.

Customer Service
- Quality products should be supported by equally strong communication with customers.
- Make your customers feel they are a priority in your business.
- Make sure if problems occur they are addressed and fixed.
- If miscommunication seems to be the source of the problem use a different method; make a phone call to replace email. If the issue requires more than a few sentences to explain, call and speak with the customer personally.

- Communicate confidently. Firm handshakes, eye contact, and smiles are important communication signals.
- Have a 30 second “elevator speech” that presents an effective first impression.
- Speak in a relaxed way that makes your audience comfortable.

Work on refining these communications skills to maximize your opportunity for success. That is my take on the subject. What is yours? Please let me know.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Business Management

Manage for Success

Let’s look at some key factors that contribute to business success. The role management plays is critical and management must focus on and achieve the goals and objectives set for the business. This can be facilitated with a number of key management functions.

1. Planning: 
The key to your success is having a business plan in place. Whether you're about to launch a start-up or you've been in business for years, your business' direction is guided by your business plan. To begin the planning process, you'll need to do some critical analysis; business planning is about realistically forecasting where your business is going.

2. Organizing: 
Organizational design is the way in which you set up your company (employees, information and technologies) to best meet your business objectives. How you structure your business has a major impact on how well it functions. There is no single best organizational design for all small businesses. Each business structure is as unique as the organization it represents.

3. Leadership:
An effective leader has a vision, a drive, and a commitment to achieve beyond that vision. The leader must then also have the skillset to enlist the support of the organization to achieve the stated goals.

4. Controlling:
Many small businesses lack proper control systems because they are focused on production or service issues.
Having a control system allows you to monitor, measure, and adjust your organisation’s performance, whether it is sales, production capabilities, or general efficiencies. In other words, the purpose of business control is to identify unfavourable business performance so appropriate actions can be undertaken.

5. Communicating:
Communication is essence of management. The basic functions of management as shown, planning, organizing, leading, controlling cannot be performed well without effective communication. Business communication involves constant flow of information and receipt of feedback. This is essential for the growth and success of the organization.

In the end, management will determine the success or failure of a business. Success surely cannot be attained without the appropriate skillset to manage.