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Improve Your Odds of Success with these Ideas

In today’s economic climate, the odds are stacked against business owners. Competition is fierce, customer needs are ever evolving, and a dedicated work force can be challenging to manage. Using the following tips will help your business survive and thrive even in the toughest of times.

1. Set Yourself Apart from the Competition

Think about makes you different. Your advantage may not be the product or service you offer, but the value you bring to your customer’s life. For example, Airline X provides transportation, just like every other airline. To set itself apart, it could promote its stellar safety record; low rates; comfortable cabin; or friendly staff. Promote what it is that stands out about your business and you will create a buzz in the industry.

2. Be Honest about your Company’s Deficiencies

If data shows that you are great at gaining customers, but bad at keeping them, find out why and fix it. Conduct market research, reeducate your staff, realign your marketing focus, and reevaluate results. Your goal should always be customer satisfaction. Having the courage to self-assess and implement needed change is crucial to your company’s survival.

3. Give Back to Your Community

Find a way to help others by voluntarily offering time and resources to a cause related to your vision and values. For example, if your company values the environment, enlist a group of staff to regularly pick up trash in local parks. If your business values housing for all, enlist a group of employees to participate in a Habitat for Humanity house-building event. Giving back shows that you care about your customers and community.

4. Invest in Innovation

Always strive to improve and expand your offerings. With future customers in mind, grow your business and perpetually add new value to your product or service. This could mean investing money and/or resources into research and development; market analysis; and the education and training of staff.

5. Monitor Your Cash Flow

Business cash flow is one of the key performance indicators that you should monitor regularly. If you fail to keep an eye on the cash flowing in and out of your business, you may not spot a problem until it is too late. Monitor your payables and receivables as well because your debtor and creditor balances will impact your cash flow when they become due.

6. Hire Great People

Be sure to recruit the friendliest, most customer-focused, bright, and driven staff. Once they are hired, provide ongoing opportunities for evaluation of employees by both customers and coworkers. Then provide training to address any deficiencies. You can do everything else right, but if your customers do not feel welcomed and appreciated, all is lost.

The Bottom Line

Starting and running your own business is difficult and risky. But if you are honest with yourself, open to change, customer-focused, differentiated, and values-driven, your business will have a much greater chance of survival.

About Universal Funding

Universal Funding is a private funding source that has funded thousands of businesses and more than $2 billion since 1998. We turn your accounts receivable into the funding you need through invoice factoring and can have capital in your hands in a matter of days.

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