Running a private business is about two things:
- business development which covers branding, marketing and sales; and
- cost management which focuses on increasing shareholder value.
If you have five staff, ideally more than 60% should be focused on the revenue side of the business. It does not matter how much costs you try to cut, if revenue is not growing, you will soon be cash trapped. Before you think about cost-cutting, first generate some money to keep the business moving.
Why organizations struggle?
Any company that must look for money in order to deliver her mandate, must make a deliberate focus on revenue growth. ALL staff must have targets for sales, including sales and admin staff. Why? Because without revenue, no one will have a job.
Not-for-profit organizations (NFPOs) too must prioritize resource mobilization. The first agenda item in every meeting must be resource mobilization targets and innovative ideas for programming and proposal writing aligned to the entity’s vision and mission.
For a small accounting, law or medical practice firm, 80% of the staff at managers level and above MUST be focused on business development and execution. I repeat, for consulting or all firms that deal with intellectual property, the main focus of ALL staff at the manager and above must be to grow the revenue side of the business. Any staff who lacks such focus is a COST to the business and one could rightly refer to them as the proverbial ‘dead weight’.
Why require managers and above to sell?
Selling professional services require people who understand the products. Your top experts are the best marketing people. They must be required to write blog articles, share them. Make insightful commentary on issues that affect your clients and prospects. Undertake and publish informed research papers aligned to your business.
For family-owned firms, you need people to focus on sales specifically customer care and after-sales service.
Marketing entails prospecting, customer service, and after-sale service. All staff in the company must be involved in one or all of these activities.
To be continued
Copyright Mustapha B Mugisa, 2019. All rights reserved.