What is SMART for an organization!

For an organization to be successful and survive in the long run, it needs to set goals and then manage the resources accordingly to achieve those goals. Moreover, besides the setting of goals, the organization needs to monitor the progress towards the goals as well so that it does not go astray and stays on course to the success.

the manager of an organization needs to be very careful in strategizing goals, moreover, no matter how well the goals are set, if the monitoring metrics are not selected right, the organization may not ever know about its success or failure in terms of achievement of goals. The lines below explain how to set goals and monitor them in an organization.

As far as the setting of goals is concerned, the goals need to be SMART. An elaboration is given below:

Specific- The goals need to be specific to the organization. You cannot set goals that are no way near the niche of the business. Like if you are a manufacturing business, you cannot have the goals and objectives of a service oriented business. Therefore, whenever setting goals, try to make them as much specific to business’s niche as possible.

Measurable- A manager should set goals that are not vague or abstract; rather they must be easily measurable. Like setting a goal of becoming the best in industry is abstract compared to setting the goal of achieving 80% share in the market. Therefore, the manager must try to set goals and objectives that are measurable.

Achievable- A small business needs to set goals that it can achieve within its resources. Therefore, a manager needs to analyze the resources available and then set the goals that could be achieved within those resources. In setting goals a business needs not to copy the competitors, as they may have different resources which increase their strength to achieve goals, hence the goals should be such that are achievable within specified resources.

Realistic- For a business it is imperative that the goals set by it are realistic and not something imaginary. A business that operates in the local marketshould set goals pertaining to the local market or to the regional level to the maximum. However, if such a business sets goals for international market then such goals would be considered unrealistic, thus non-achievable.

Time bound- The goals and objectives need to have a specific time frame in which the business must achieve it. It’s the achievement of goals within time that helps an organization measure its performance and see whether the goals have been successfully achieved or not. Therefore, a manager must set goals that must be achieved within given period.

Pertaining to the monitoring of the goals a manager needs to consider the following measures:

  • First of all the manager needs to set the proper metrics against which the performance in achievement of goals could be measured and monitored. For instance, for a call center team the metric could be the sales made.
  • Secondly, the manager needs to appoint reliable people among employees who could effectively report to the manager about the progress in achievement of goals.
  • Thirdly, the manager needs to be observant of the situation himself, keep an eye on the happenings and continuously compare and contrast the goals with the consumption of resources and time consumed.

Bottom Line:

In short, the monitoring of goals in an organization is as important as is the setting of goals. Therefore, a good manager in order to strive a business to success needs to set SMART goals and then the according monitoring metrics to measure the performance of the organization.

Transition From an Entrepreneur to A CEO

It goes without saying that the business industry of today survives on entrepreneurs. With the consumer market expanding, world becoming a global village, more and more individuals are coming up with unique ideas, that make them call themselves Entrepreneur.

No denying the fact that the title of Entrepreneur is synonymous with Brilliance, however, to run a business the title as well as the person needs to be transformed from Entrepreneur to CEO. If Entrepreneurship is all about brilliance, then CEO-ship is all about effective management, which is one point where most of the entrepreneurs lose the grip.

Before moving on to how an entrepreneur can make the transition to CEO smooth and simple, the first thing to do is find out the things a CEO has to perform well in order to do justice with the title.

  • Firstly, a CEO needs to set milestones and directions. A CEO must have an attitude that says no to all kinds of distraction and always remains focused at the end goals and objectives.
  • Second comes the proper allocation of resources, which includes both human and financial resources.
  • Thirdly, one of the most challenging tasks for a CEO is the hiring and firing of the top management, which could either, set the business on the right course, or totally derail it.

Transiting from Entrepreneur to CEO:

The primary functions of CEO would seem simple and easy to do to any Entrepreneur. However, the fact of the matter is that these are one of the most difficult tasks a manager could face. A CEO needs to know a bit about every process of the business, he needs to be the Chief Financial Officer, Chief Marketing Officer, and chief of almost everything.

The lines below give an insight to how an Entrepreneur can make the transition to CEO simple and easy.

  1. The first thing is to keep record of the time you spend in performing the above mentioned tasks. CEO needs to be chief of everything, therefore, an Entrepreneur must learn about every process, have a thorough understanding of it, and give every task its due share of time.
  2. The second thing an Entrepreneur must do is to realize that he cannot be an expert in any of the tasks. Therefore, the right way of pursuing all the tasks is by keeping it simple and steady, instead of spending all the time in mastering a simple task.
  3. The third thing for an Entrepreneur to do is to decide between the ‘context’ and ‘core’ of the business. Core is what a business has to do in-house or on-shore, and context is everything else, which can be and must be outsourced to become an effective CEO.
  4. Hiring and outsourcing company is another thing that represents the transition from Entrepreneur to CEO. If you cannot manage the clients, or don’t have the time to manage them effectively, then the right thing to do would be to hire a virtual agent, or an employee on shore who can share the burden while you emphasis on the strategic matters.
  5. Not getting out of the comfort zone is another mistake which most of the Entrepreneurs make in this transition phase. A CEO needs to be agile and must know everything related to the venture and not merely about his areas of expertise only.

Bottom Line:

In a nutshell, the transition phase from an Entrepreneur to a CEO is very delicate and demanding. Even a single mistake can mar whole of the fruits of the unique idea. Therefore, an Entrepreneur needs to be a master of all, an agile person, and a good manager to become a CEO.

Top Five Reasons Why Businesses Fail

Different studies over the years have shown that 96% of the businesses fail to survive the first ten years after their launch, while 80% of the businesses fail to survive the first two years. Several reasons can be associated with failure of business, the major of which is the economic downturn.

Besides the major reason of the economic crisis, there are several other reasons that lead to the failure of a business. The lines below will shed light on the major reasons that cause the failure of businesses and hinder in their prosperity and growth.

1. Lack of Vision:

The major reason why businesses fail is that the business owners fail to see the bigger picture and are unable to provide the employees with any vision. Just working on need basis enable you to survive for a short period, but to achieve success you need to have a vision that is properly articulated and should run through the whole organization from top to bottom.

2. Lack of Planning:

Planning is the corner stone to the success of a business. It serves as a road map, which the business has to follow on its course to success. Therefore, you have to properly plan before you undertake any activity or process. In planning, you should consider benchmarks and goals that will serve as the small steps, which a business would take to arrive at its destination of success. Lack of planning causes the business to tremble and fall down from the ladder of success.

3. Non-Establishment of Measuring Metrics:

When a business starts its processes, it needs to measure the performance of the activities. To measure the performance the business needs to establish some metrics. Businesses that do not establish metrics for performance measurement fail to keep track of it, and in the long runare unable to see whether they have failed or succeeded, thus they live in oblivion of their actual productivity.

4. Ignoring Cash Flow:

Cash is the king in business no matter whatever happens. Therefore, it is of critical importance to keep a check on the cash flows. You must keep an eye on your expenditures, your credits and all the cash that comes into the business or goes out of it. Failing to do so will lead to misinformation and unreliable data about the business, which would ultimately take the business on the verge of failure.

5. Not Diversifying:

The true success of the business lies in diversification. Due to the unstable market situation a business cannot rely solely on a single product or service, rather the business owner needs to diversify and add more products in the product line so that if one product fails the other could cover up for it. Not diversifying is a great risk, which does not always end up good for the businesses in the end.

Bottom Line:

In short, the market is very competitive and there is very little room for the business to experiment or be casual about any of the business processes. By giving the employees a broad vision, proper planning, measuring performance, keeping track of cash flows, and diversifying with passage of time a business can survive the competition, economic downturn, and prosper in the long run.

Tips on Transiting From Employee To Entrepreneur

It is the dream of every employee to have a business of his or her own and be called an “Entrepreneur”. A good proportion of employees bear their employment time in the hope of breaking the shackles one day and becoming their own boss. Although this dream has an equal possibility of becoming true for every employee, however, it stays a dream if there is no action plan.

Every employee has the right of pursuing the dream of becoming aentrepreneur. However, there are certain cautions and measures an employee has to take in order to ensure safe transition. The lines below give tips on successfully transiting from an employee to an Entrepreneur.

Stay Determined:

The first thing for an employee wanting to become an entrepreneur is to stay determined. When you have the dream of becoming your own boss, the stay true to it and show determination. Moreover, when you are determined to reach where you want to then you need not pay any heed to what your co-workers would say about you leaving your job, or how they will manage the work in your absence.

Be Practical:

The other thing an employee has to remember while transiting to entrepreneur is to be practical in the approach. Seldom are the chances of you earning million dollars overnight. Therefore, while pursuing the dream, you need to be practical in your approach, have a plan about how you are going to go about your dream and the timeframe in which you want to achieve it.

Take The Leap:

Once you have decided to become an entrepreneur, the next thing is to get started and take the leap. Once you take the initial step only then you will realize the possibilities that are there and what steps afterwards can help increase the momentum of the transition phase.

Switch Gradually:

Switching to an entrepreneur must never by like this that one day you are an employee, and second day you give the resign and decide on becoming an entrepreneur. On contrary, the successful route for transition is to take step-by-step. Make a plan and break down your path into steps and then take each step at a time. Like, first, convert your job to part time and give the rest of time to your business, and then gradually quit the job. Only gradual transition leads to long terms success and growth.

Get Training:

Taking orders or collaborating with others is one thing, while giving orders and having the work done from others is another. Therefore, when you as an employee are thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, you must start taking some training sessions side by side. So that when you take the role of entrepreneur, you know how to behave and act.

Bottom Line:

In a nutshell, the road from employee to entrepreneur is a long one and it must not be expected to cover it in a snap. Therefore, be modest in your approach, and never let reasoning take over the passion.

Tips On Hiring A Superstar Sales Person

Every sales manager or a business owner understands the importance of a quality sales professional. A superstar sales person single handedly supersedes several average sales professionals. Therefore, every business owner wants to hire the best sales people.

When it comes to hiring quality sales people it is a frantic job for the business owners and managers. There are a lot of factors that a business has to consider and many more to undertake in order to hire a super star sales person. The lines below give different tips on hiring a quality sales person.

Job Advertisement:

The most crucial aspect in hiring a good sales person is the job advertisement. The more persuasive and attractive a job advertisement is more would be the chances of it catching the eye of quality professionals and they falling for it. The job advertisement could be made attractive by adding persuasive lines such as:

  • The minimum and maximum earnings a sales person could make on the project
  • The remunerations that come along with the job
  • Additional benefits and bonus details

Interview:

Conducting the job interview for a sales person would be like conducting any other interview, however, the business owner needs to change the selection metrics a bit in the interview of a sales person. The factor to vouch for in interview for a superstar sales person is to hire a sales person on the basis of ability on contrary to hiring one on the employment history. The interviewer needs to assess the abilities that the sales person posses and see whether they are a suitable fit for the job or not. Relying on employment history is advised only when the sales person is to be hired for the same project or the same industry.

Compensation Plan:

The one thing that a business must have clear in its mind is that sales people are here for money. Therefore, in order to hire the best you have to offer the best. When hiring a quality sales person you need to make sure that you have the best compensation plan. A business does not want only to hire a quality sales person; rather it wants to retain such talent. Therefore, the compensation plan is what attracts a quality sales person and it is what retains the sales person, hence its importance must never be undermined, rather, it must be greatly valued.

Bottom Line:

Summarizing all above, it can be concluded that in order to hire the superstar sales person a business needs to write an attractive ad that grabs the attention of the job seeker, afterwards, the business has to go for the ability of the sales person instead of employment history, and finally the business needs to have the best compensation plan for the best personnel.

Reasons For Failure Of Business In First Two Years

Market statistics show that only 10% of the businesses survive the first two years of their launch. This shows the kind of competition the newly launched businesses face, especially small businesses. Furthermore, there are several external factors that cause the business to fail, however, in most of the cases it’s the internal factors that cause the failure.

There can be a variety of reasons for the failure of a small business in the first two years of its launch. However, there are some general characteristics which most of the failing businesses share, the lines below give detail of such factors.

Poor Leadership:

The primary reason for the failure of small businesses in the initial years is the poor leadership. Most of the startup businesses are setup by entrepreneurs thus the whole staff looks towards the entrepreneur for guidance and vision. If the leader is not able to provide vision to the employees, set goals, and motivate the employees in achievement of goals then the business is surely to fail in its start years.

Poor Execution of Business Plan:

For a business, the successful execution of a business plan is as necessary as is having a good plan. A good plan if not executed successfully is of no use to the business. The major reason why businesses fail to survive the first two years is because they are unable to execute their plan properly, which leads to ambiguity in processes and ultimately to the failure of business.

Poor Cost Containment:

In order to be successful a business needs to meet its expenses within its budget. The businesses that fail to meet their expenses within the limited budget eventually run out of capital thus fail to survive within the first two years of their launch. Therefore, it is imperative for a business to keep the expenses in check and make sure that they are met within the specified and allocated budget.

Unrealistic Expectations:

A new business must not be expected to generate millions of revenue in its initial years, neither should it be expected from the business to outdo the competition in the first two years. These are unrealistic expectations, pursuing which business might spend its entire budget on futile activities. The realistic expectation for the first two years might be to survive on a breakeven point for the first two years and then a business can think of earning greater profits. Having unrealistic expectations is another reason for the failure of the businesses.

Bottom Line:

In short, the prime factors that do not let a new business survive the first two years of its launch include poor leadership, poor execution of business plan, poor cost containment strategy and setting unrealistic expectations pertaining to the first two years of the business.

The Power of Using Emerging Market Economic Conditions to Maximize your Company’s Profit

World has become a global village. With the revolution in technology and means of transport, now people in one part of the world can have access to the resources and people of some distant part of the globe.

On the basis of economic development, the world is basically classified into two economies. The developed or prosperous economies, and the emerging economies. The main characteristic of emerging economy is the per capita income, where people have middle to low per capita income.

The per capita income is an economic condition, which the business owners of developed economies can utilize to increase their return on profits. The low per capita income and the quality resources available in emerging economies makes it ideal for a business to outsource its processes to such market conditions, and earn greater profits.

The two primary advantages of making use of emerging economy market conditions, along with the ways of doing so are discussed below.

  1. The primary advantage a business owner can reap from an emerging market is the low cost. As the per capita income in emerging countries is low, therefore if a business can find the right people that could do the job of the business’s on shore processes in a professional manner, then the business can save great on cost by outsourcing the process to emerging economy. For instance, if a business pays high cost for its telemarketing processes on shore, then the business can easily shift or outsource its processes to a country like India or Brazil, where employees can be hired on a value driven cost.
  2. The second advantage comes in the form of competent workforce. Although the emerging economies have low per capita income, but the talent they have is as competent as it could be in any part of the world. The most suitable way for an entrepreneur, or the CEO of a small and medium business to make use of the talent of the emerging economies would be by hiring a Virtual Assistant. The virtual assistant or assistants, are hired employees of the business, and perform all the tasks and duties assigned by the employers from there homeland, which reduces the burden as well as the cost of the business owner onshore.

When it comes to ways of making use of the powers of emerging economy market conditions, there are two ways of doing so.

  1. The first and the orthodox way of doing so would be that the business owner visits the emerging economy market, makes an assessment of the resources available there both in terms of physical and human resource, and then accordingly decide on whether to establish an offshore office in the market or not.
  2. On the other hand, the new and trending way of making use of emerging market economy is by consulting an outsourcing firm and then asking the firm to hire virtual assistants that should perform the delegated tasks. This way of taking advantage is commonly adopted by entrepreneurs, and small to medium size business owners.

Bottom Line:

In a nutshell, emerging economy markets offer great potential to the business owners in developed countries. By availing the expertise in emerging markets that are available on value driven rates, a small business can significantly increase its return on profits.

Major Challenges Faced By Startup Businesses

Starting a business is one of the most fulfilling and satisfying activity for an entrepreneur. However, the kind of exhilarating feeling starting of one’s own business brings, it also brings an equal daunting feeling. An entrepreneur must be mentally prepared for the frantic stress he or she would go through while starting a new business.

For an entrepreneur it is necessary to anticipate the challenges the startup business is going to face so that the recuperating measures should be taken in order to ensure that the business is a success. The lines below give the major challenges startup businesses face.

Money:

The biggest challenge and obstacle most of the small businesses face is of running out of money. The prime reason for running out of money is the starting of business with low cash. The reason for a business starting with low cash is that the entrepreneurs borrow money by keeping the success of the business in mind and not the failure of it. Therefore, if a startup business borrows money by keeping the worst case scenario in mind, then probably it wont go out of cash.

Marketing:

The second major challenge or problem the startup businesses face is of marketing. The entrepreneurs in rush of instantly getting their offerings into the market, chose the easily available marketing sources like TV and Radio ads and print media, without properly researching about the target audience. There are chances that the target audience of the business would be searching on the internet for which the business is publishing print ads. Therefore, a business needs to have the right marketing plan after doing proper research on the target audience.

Work-Life Balance:

Setting up a business is perhaps one of the most daunting tasks an entrepreneur can face. Therefore, to fulfill such task complete devotion from an entrepreneur is required, which most of the times affects the personal life of the entrepreneur.Therefore, when starting up a new business or during its course of starting years, the entrepreneur needs to be strong and try the best to balance both life and work.

Pricing of Product or Service:

Startup businesses have a large list of competitors to beat, to do so the businesses go for setting low price for their product or service. This strategy works initially but fails in the long run as the competitors may be big stores that buy in bulk, doing which would be impossible for a startup business. Therefore, a startup business needs to be reasonable in pricing and not outdo itself while trying to beat competition.

Sharing of Authority:

Entrepreneurs when starting a new business try to do all the work and handle all the processes themselves. The prime reason for which is that it’s a cost effective way of running a business and secondly entrepreneurs don’t find anyone else trustworthy. Although these reasons may seem logical, but doing all is very challenging, therefore, an entrepreneur needs to find employees or partners, which can be trusted in matters of authority.

 

Bottom Line:

In short, an entrepreneur before starting a new business should keep the possible challenges, obstacles and problems in mind, and be ready for them, so that if any of the problems occurs it could be dealt with accordingly.

How To Build A Dream Sales Team

In the highly competitive world of today, ever business needs to make sales in order to survive. Moreover, making a few sales does not cut for the business any more, rather the business needs to continue on making sales if it wishes to survive in the long run and outdo the competition.

In order to capture the market effectively a business needs to build the best team that could achieve the sales target of the business effectively and efficiently. The lines below give information on how you can build your dream sales team.

Leads:

In order to make sales, an organization needs a strong funnel of leads. If the sales people were to generate leads as well, it would seriously slow down their performance. Therefore, in order to get the best out of the team, they need to be provided with leads. To provide leads a business can hire a telemarketing service provider who could have the leads ready and transfer them to the sales team for closing.

Establish Rules:

Sales can be a dirty business, and you don’t want your sales team people to cut each other’s throats. Therefore, when you build a sales team first establishrules to make sure that there is minimal coercion in the sales team. Every person should pursue his or her lead no lead should be pursued by multiple personnel, and there must be clear rules about handling the in-bound sales inquiry. This rules establishment ensures systematic running of processes and synergy in the team.

Go For The Best:

In a Dream sales team, there must be no room for second best. Therefore, a business must hire the best sales people and then invest in them by providing training and coaching to them. Hiring second best sales people results in business investing double time, efforts and money in them in order to bring them up to the mark. Hence, only quality professionals must be made part of the sales team.

Healthy Competition:

For a Dream sales team it is very necessary that the Sales representative must compete with each other, however, to avoid any ill effects of the competition the business needs to make it a healthy competition. In order to do so a business can arrange fun outings, sales based competitions, metric-focused dashboards and so on. For a Dream team having a healthy competition environment is very crucial hence due diligence must be made in this regard.

Communication:

In order to make the Dream sales team perform the best it is of utmost importance that there is frequent communication between the leads generators and the sales team. The more frequent and effective the communication between the two parties better would be the flow of information and greater performance of the sales team.

Bottom Line:

In short, building a Dream Sales team is a frantic job for a business. However, if a business succeeds in building a dream sales team, then the prosperity, success and growth of the business is guaranteed.

Growing Your Business By Outsourcing

Globalization is no more a concept, rather the advancement in technology and means of transportation have made the world a global village in true sense. Now a person sitting at one end of the world can effectively observe and convey the message to some other distant part of the world.

However, with globalization also came competition which made the life hard for large corporate, and extremely hard for small businesses who are looking to make their mark. The other thing which globalization brought along with it is the concept of outsourcing. It is the process that has benefited small and medium businesses the most.

With outsourcing, a small and medium size business owner can make his/her business grow without investing huge capital. The major thing that differentiates a small business from a large corporate is the capital, if this hurdle is removed, then small businesses can compete in the international market more effectively. This is where outsourcing comes in.

If a small business is deciding to start a new process, let’s say call center. Then it is but natural that the business would require huge capital to develop the infrastructure and establish the call center. It may include, the cost of building, the cost of equipment, and the cost fulfilling the legal requirements and so on. However, on the other hand if the business decides to outsource this process then it can significantly help reduce the cost for such expansion in business.

The call center outsourcing companies specialize in offering infrastructure and all the equipment related to call center and the business does not has to spend a dime on all this process. The business just needs to select the service provider, and they will take care of all the infrastructure and establishment processes and needs.

The other expense of the business that requires investment is the hiring of staff and management. In developed country, it is very hard to find competent professionals on affordable cost whereas, in developing countries the same competency in human resource can be found but at the least cost possible. Therefore, when a business outsources its process to an offshore location, it gets the best and quality human resource with a low investment in hiring expenditure.

The processes that cause hindrance in the growth of a business are the non-core or non-strategic processes that take most of the time of the small business owner away, making him unable to focus on matters of strategic importance that can result in business growth. With outsourcing company, the business can simply transfer the processes of non-strategic importance to the company, and focus on the matters of strategic importance.

In short, using an outsourcing company is the best way a small business can make the business grow to new horizons and that too with minimal investment. Outsourcing can help business save cost, which can further be invested in expanding the business and make it grow.