Gina Blitstein Article

Gina Blitstein Article
Picture of Gina Blitstein Gina Blitstein combines her insight as a fellow small business owner with her strong communication skills, exploring topics that enhance your business efforts. That first-hand knowledge, matched with an insatiable curiosity to know more about just about anything, makes her a well-rounded writer with a sincere desire to engage and inform.

Purge Your Business of Unnecessary Things, Expenses and Bad Habits

Purge Your Business of Unnecessary Things, Expenses and Bad Habits

Whether it’s the beginning of a new calendar year, a new employee hire or just because it’s due, you’ll eventually realize that the time has come to evaluate and update certain of your business’ procedures. Hopefully, you’ll come to this conclusion when you have the luxury of taking the time to evaluate solutions, rather than when some part of your procedure is broken. Whatever brings you to the tipping point, consider it an opportunity; an opportunity to streamline procedures, purge bad habits and cut unnecessary expenses.

Purging your business of that which is unnecessary may seem counter to your natural “flow.” Most businesses don’t shake things up for no reason at all. As the saying goes, “If it’s not broken, why fix it?” It’s best, however, to avoid complacency when it comes to the tools and procedures on which you depend to run your business. Running a streamlined organization depends upon remaining vigilant to the things that pull your business down. Perform periodic evaluations of time and effort requirements as well as cost of performing your basic office functions, production and marketing expenses. The time for “out with the old” may have arrived if you discover one of the following situations has descended upon your place of business:

Hobbling along with outdated or inefficient equipment

In talking to your employees, are you hearing that they are dissatisfied with the way work must be performed or with the equipment they use? Most employees will tolerate less-than-ideal procedures and equipment - up to a point. When they feel that the way things are done (or the equipment they must use to do them) are outmoded, they will let you know. Do listen; they are cluing you in to the fact that they are feeling their efforts are underappreciated and undervalued. Making an investment in a program that will streamline accounting, data input and maintenance or human resource details can empower your employees to perform their jobs more efficiently - while simultaneously letting them know that you value their contributions enough to put your money where your mouth is. Investing in newer, better or more appropriate industry equipment can help you run your business more effectively and potentially increase quality. If you’re making do with outdated equipment, your employees as well as your product could be suffering.

Unquestioning payment of expenses

Once in a while, it’s prudent to assess your business’ expenses. Are you getting good value for your day-to-day “costs of doing business?” We tend to consider these regularly-occurring expenses as unavoidable and fixed but you’d be surprised at what you can save by carefully evaluating them. Some areas you may want to look into for potential savings include:

  1. Business insurance (Are you eligible for discounts for multiple policies, no claims or loss-prevention steps implemented?)
  2. Internet plan (Are you paying for more data than you need or paying overages because you’re on a plan that’s too low for your actual use?)
  3. Phone system (Do you still need a landline? Is your company mobile package the most affordable for your actual use?)
  4. Software (Are there alternative programs that could serve your needs just as well for less than you’re currently paying?)
  5. Your business’ building(s), equipment, vehicles (Would it be to your financial advantage you rent rather than own - or vise-versa?)

Taking control of your expenses will help you feel like you’re running the business, instead of it running you.

Autopilot mindset

Humans are creatures of habit, for sure - but that’s not necessarily the best mindset for running a successful business. Getting stuck in a rut, doing things the same way, despite a reasonable rationale is a bad habit to which you don’t want to fall victim. Don’t let too much time pass without asking yourself questions like these:

Why do we…

  1. process orders the way we do?
  2. record income and expenses the way we do?
  3. keep track of customers the way we do?
  4. advertise the way we do?
  5. structure the work day the way we do?
  6. provide employee benefits the way we do?
  7. manufacture products the way we do?
  8. handle customer service issues the way we do?

Hopefully, there’s a logical reason for doing things the way you do. By remaining vigilant of why certain processes are in place, you’ll know when they cease to be useful and you can take the helm and right the course.

No matter when you feel the time is right, it’s important to take the initiative to purge your business of the unnecessary things, expenses and bad habits that have the potential to drag it down. Conquer business stagnation: streamline your business and reap the rewards!

What are the things, expenses and bad habits that could be purged from your business?

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