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Are you geared up to grow your business and hit your numbers?

You are networking with your market (Face-to-face, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook), you are attending industry events and you are writing interesting content on your website that gain a few hits. However, the cash flow is leaking, the sales numbers are drying up and you are doing the same thing (products and operations) as you were doing 3 years ago. Meanwhile you are left wondering, what you need to do to drive growth.

Here are some questions you need to ask yourself:

* Have you got a vision, strategy and business plan?

* Do you know your key performance numbers?

  • Who are your top 5 customers? What are you doing to increase business from them?
  • Who are your most unprofitable customers? What is your plan for them?
  • What are your repeat business or customer renewal rates?
  • How many new customers are you getting per month? Where are they coming from?
  • Are you ahead or behind your sales plan? Have you got a sales plan?

 * Do you understand your customer and competitor dynamics?

  • Why do customers buy from you?
  • What are the reasons for some to stop buying from you?
  • What are your competitors’ offerings? How do you differ from them?

 * Are you clear on what investments you will need to make to improve your business?

  • Will investments be in new product development? What new products have you planned?
  • Will investments be in process improvements?
  • Will investments be in new staff? If so what functions? Why? What returns do you expect?

* Is your sales and marketing plan in place?

  • Are you clear who you are targeting and why? Or do you undertake a free-wheeling approach and hope the phone will ring with that magical lucrative contract?
  • Is your messaging clear? Have you sufficient and appropriate collateral?
  • Do you know who will be responsible for developing relationships and sales with which customers and prospects?
  • Have you worked out the stages you want to move your customers through to generate sales?

If you have not already considered and taken action on some or all of the above, your business may drift aimlessly. Growth (if any) will be a case of luck rather than controlled and planned, with stress and nightmares potentially around the corner.

Start taking positive steps to managing the growth of your business. Take action now!

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