Understanding the Stages of a Business

During the growth of any business, a company will go through the stages of the business life cycle and encounter different challenges that require different resources and expertise. For example, a Wellington tow truck business may require to come up with a different strategy when it comes to market penetration, retaining market share, or business development. As the business becomes more mature, operations and priorities will change and this calls for different resources to be injected into the business.

Here are the different stages any business will go through, to realize its success.

Development stage

The development stage, also known as the seed stage is the beginning of a business life cycle. It occurs when your brilliant idea is just a though and requires different testing at the initial stages. To test your business idea, you need to conduct research that pertains to your industry, gather feedback, and analyze the reports you get. Doing so will help you determine whether your business idea is worth pursuing or not. The challenges you will face include business idea profitability, market acceptance, establishing business structure, and accounting management.

Startup stage

Now that you have decided your business is worth pursuing and you have made some moves, things start to get interesting. You have already finished developing your products and services and your business starts its marketing as well as selling. At this stage, you will be tweaking your products and service according to the initial feedback you got during the research stage. You will need to learn and adjust your business model accordingly and meet customer expectations. The challenges you will face include managing cash reserves, managing sales expectations, accounting management, establishing a customer base, and establishing market presence.

Growth/Survival stage

Your business has gone through the initial stages of a business life cycle and its now in its growth or survival stage. The business is constantly generating revenue as well as adding new customers. Your business could be operating at a net loss as well. You will need to fine-tune your business model to be in line with your goals and expectations. The challenges you will be facing include; dealing with increased revenue, dealing with increasing customers, accounting management, effective management, and market competition.

Expansion Stage

The expansion stage is also known as a rapid growth stage. Your business has been thriving and has established its presence. You have now reached a stage where your business will expand and spread into new markets. To capitalize on the success, you have been experiencing, you will need to capture a larger market share and find new revenue. Challenges you will face include increasing market competition, accounting management, moving into new markets, adding new products or services, and expanding existing businesses.

Maturity Stage

The last stage of a business is the maturity stage. After a successful expansion, your business will be on top of the industry and will have matured. Your business has a dominating presence in its market. It could still be growing but not at an alarming stage. You will either decide to take a step back towards the expansion stage or think of a possible exit strategy.

What You Need to Know about Business Intelligence

IntelligenceRegardless of whether you are running a cleaning services business or a tech company, you need to make use of data to help you drive your business in the right manner. To run a successful business in today’s world, you need to understand and implement business intelligence and analytics. Businesses that make use of data stand a better chance to leverage it to their advantage. The value of monitoring and analyzing data, especially web data, is something that businesses should take very seriously.

 

What does business intelligence involve?

Business intelligence deals with groupings of data in an organization to track performance and help in business planning. It aims at answering the question of what happened, and what can be done to promote improvements. On the other hand, business analytics deals with skills, technologies and applications that are required for the purpose of exploration and investigating the data acquired to craft business intelligence.

Businesses should aim at incorporating business intelligence in their day to day tasks because of the following reasons.

 

Smart business decisions

When you are running a business, it is very important to have a firm grasp of what data is telling you. Information does not necessarily translate to intelligence, but key to that depends with the way information is applied. The main goal of business intelligence is to convert a company’s information into a structured and analyzable insight. Real business intelligence helps in crafting a strategic decision for a company.

 

Smash sales and marketing goals

Business intelligence aims at delivering an in-depth analysis that help in kick starting sales and boosting marketing performance. If a business can provide its salespeople with tools that can measure their activity and identify customer behavior trends, such people stand a better chance to smash sales targets.

Gain Customer Knowledge

One of the main reasons business intelligence is important lies on the ways it can be used to understand how businesses are interacting with customers. A business that does not have customer knowledge is more likely to fall behind its competitors. Businesses need to understand the typical customer journey from the point of initial interest up to the point a purchase is completed. Solutions such as CRM can be very resourceful to provide the required intelligence that businesses need to map their customer journey.

 

Productivity

Business intelligence has huge potentials to release any inefficient bottlenecks by refining existing business processes and automating routine tasks. This helps in bringing new levels of productivity and efficiency. When data is centralized, it becomes available to every authorized person and this can be particularly important for administrative purposes. When a company has a large data to handle, it is very important to come up with policies that promote data accuracy and protection.

 

Customer Experiences

Business intelligence is particularly important in helping businesses deliver outstanding customer experience. It is very important for businesses to improve their knowledge on their customers as it helps in overall customer satisfaction and retention. Data provides the basis for enhancing customer service and allows a business to spot when a prospective customer might be on a buying mode.

 

 

Easy Ways to Improving Your Networking Skills

smartEven for the greatest extroverts out there, networking can be a very difficult aspect. It takes the right strategy, practice, patience and a good attitude. Suppose you have a started a new business such as https://towtruckfairfax.com/locations/vienna-tow-truck and you are looking for ways to win customers and expand it. How are you going to do about it if you lack the right network?  Here, we look at key ways on how to improve your networking skills so that you can grow a professional list of connections and contacts.

Keeping it real

To improve your networking skills, the single most important thing you need is being honest and keeping it real. Authenticity is key to acquiring the right networks. The foundation of networking is connecting with people and finding a common ground. You have to explore mutual interests that all of you have. It is less of ensuring that you come off smart and powerful but has more to do with being present and interested with others. Look at networking as an opportune chance to know people and see the things and values you share together.

 

Find common grounds

Invest in finding common interests and grounds with the people around you. Networking is great for curious people. Those people who have many interests will likely find others who have similar interest or some form of shared curiosities. You need to be prepared to ask questions and share with others issues about life beyond what happens at work and office.

 

Set attainable goals

goals 2019You need to set frequent goals – it can be weekly or monthly networking goals. Setting goals is an effective and practical way to evaluate your progress. You need to commit yourself to the network for a certain amount of time each week. You can decide to grab a coffee with a new person every week. Whatever you decide to do, ensure that you are committed and do not forget to include adequate networking time.

 

Be a team player

Always do your best and work towards becoming a team player. Networking doesn’t have to take place at fancy events or in conferences. It is something that can happen at your school, job or during internships. If you can prove your competence to the people around you, they will definitely communicate to the rest of the team that you are the person to depend on, once they are faced with some form of difficulty. All you need to do is to build a positive reputation in your field and others will always want to be associated with you.

 

Ask Questions

You need to ask the right questions and insightful ones during a networking meeting. Asking questions is the best way to open up to the other person and ensure that the other person can have something to share with you. Asking questions also show your interest in forming a relationship with others. Remember that the sole purpose of networking is quality over quantity. Relationships are formed in real life over genuine mutual interests with a common ground.

 

Where to Invest to Retire Early

retireMost of us want an early retirement but very few have the motivation, discipline and the know-how to achieve it. Retiring early requires the right planning and saving as well as strategic investing. To enjoy a good retirement life, you will need to invest in more than the traditional investment methods such as IRA and 401K. This is because these clubs can penalize you severally for taking out funds before the required 59 and half years.

When looking forward to retiring early, here are a couple of things you need to get right.

 

Up your saving rate

Saving is a core component of any successful early retirement. Even if you have the best investment strategy in the world, you will not realize a big percentage of profits if you only have $10 in your saving. To up your saving rate, you need to focus on two of the biggest sectors that consume your money, and that is housing and food. You need to cut back on these components and aim at making a 20 to 30 percent saving on these items. You need to cut on any underutilized memberships and cut back on impulse purchases.

 

Increase your income

The basic principle is this; if you can earn more, you can save and invest more as well. This will help you in achieving your financial independence sooner.  To boost your income, you can ask for a pay rise or ask to get promoted. Alternatively, you can start a side hustle or work extra hours. If you have at least three years of experience with you, you can be a good asset for many employers as they will all be looking to give you an offer and get the best out of you.

 

Put your money to work for you

Once you have worked towards upping your savings rate, you can maximize your income and turn your attention on all efforts that contribute towards growing your money. You need to understand that saving money alone won’t get you rich, but investing will. You need to focus on all the ways that can help you earn passively with little or no effort.

Lastly, you can focus on optimizing your taxes. As your income sources become bigger, you can focus on ways that will promote tax efficiency. You need to focus on what type of investments go into your taxable income and work on ways that can help you avoid paying some basic taxes. You can also focus on tax efficient investments such as pensions, tax-exempt bonds, us treasuries and bonds.

 

Tips to Saving Money Effectively

budgetWe all have very good intentions when it comes to saving money. We normally get advice to start saving money once we reach a certain milestone, be it age, a certain pay rise or when your kids move out. But in reality, you need to start saving when you develop healthy money habits. Taking time to manage your money better can pay off big time. It can help you stay on top of your bills and meet all your financial requirements. You can use extra savings to pay all your debts and help you have a healthier financial statement

To save money effectively, here are vital things you must follow;

 

Set up a budget

Setting up a budget is the very first step to taking control of your finances. It will take a little effort to come up with a budget, but it is a great way to get you on the right financial track. If you have a budget, you will less likely end up in a debt. You are also less likely to get caught up by unexpected costs. You are more likely to have a good credit score. If you are spending more than you earn, you must work towards getting your budget back on track.

Get out of Debt

You need to pay up your loans and credit card and get off all the debts. If you don’t pay these first, you need to know that they are attracting high interest. For any loan you have, you need to ensure that you don’t break the terms of the loan agreement. Even if you are looking forward to paying off another debt, you must pay at least the minimum required on loans and credit cards.

Set a savings goal

Some people find it hard to get the right motivation for saving. Saving is often much easier said than done. The first step to realizing your saving goals is to have your emergency savings. You should not worry if you can’t afford to have emergency savings at the start of your saving efforts. The best way to save money is to have a savings account and deposit some money in it at the end of the week or month.

Once you have your savings, you need to invest them. Make an investment plan that is in line with your timeframes and goals. For every expense that bothers you, figure out if you have saved for that particular expense. If not, create its saving goal and timeline and work towards meeting the saving needs.

 

 

 

Steps to Achieving Your Financial Freedom

savingsBeing free financially means that you can finance and maintain your desired lifestyle without a regular paycheck. Money tears families apart ruin relationships and marriages and keep people from pursuing their dreams. Troubles with money inject unnecessary stress, arguments, and anxiety into our daily lives to keep our discontent.

We all want to be independent in life, be it in the decisions we take or financial wise. The first step towards achieving financial freedom is having a paradigm shift in your attitude towards money. Some of us have a very bad interaction with money and we have terribly failed to achieve our financial goals. Most people inherit their behaviors and habits towards money from influential people in their lives, and this makes many fail to achieve their financial goals.

If you are looking forward to achieving financial freedom, there are notable things you need to do.

 

Take charge of your money

The simplest way of taking charge of your money is working with a budget. A budget simply involves a spending plan that helps you keep track of your finances. You may consider having a small notebook to record all your financial needs and expenditure. Ensure that you record every shilling you spend and keep track of where your money is coming from. Focus on your priorities and avoid mindless spending.

 

Get out of Debt

DebtThe first step towards getting out of debt is by cutting your costs. Debt puts your life on the backtrack and hinders your progress. Reduce your debt and aim at spending less than you earn. Get to know and keenly study your spending habits. Once you cut costs, allocate a portion of those finances to paying the debt. Avoid cutting a lot of costs at once as you may end up frustrated. The key is cutting costs gradually.

 

The power of savings

You need to save and supplement your income. You have to take care of your future by saving. Saving all involves preparing to spend in the future and being able to live a comfortable life throughout your whole life. You need to find means and ways of supplementing your budget. You need to set up a base for your financial well-being as careful financial planning can help you get away with money problems.

Investing

Overall, your options and choice of investing will be dictated mostly by the amount of time you have and your financial knowledge. It will also be determined by the goals you want to achieve. There are two key types of investments, which include active investments and passive ones. An active investment needs your daily input, you have to be there every day to help in managing the business. Active investments involve things such as owning livestock, running an agribusiness or running an enterprise.

Passive investments include things such as owning financial assets such as corporate bonds, treasury bonds, investing in unit trusts, money markets among others. The return on investment on passive incomes are generally very stable and safe. Finally, you need to establish your current financial positions and work towards improving it.