5 ways for SMEs to take on 2022
The old adage, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail” has never been truer. The past two years have required both corporates, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to do business differently. But what does “differently” entail?
As a leading South African-born fintech, ProfitShare Partners is committed to providing capital for businesses – in particular, SMEs. We also understand that small businesses with access to robust information and support fare better in turbulent times.
Here are five ways ProfitShare Partners suggest SMEs plan for the New Year, differently and more effectively than before.
1 Business strategy
A business strategy that plans for predictable and unpredictable business changes ensures resilience. Just as COVID19 has shifted – and will likely continue to do so – business leaders must do the same.
Your business strategy should be a roadmap through smooth sailing and difficulties. For example, if there’s a supply-chain disruption in your sector, how do you plan to work around it? How will you prepare your staff to work from home, providing the equipment and training they need to function optimally? How will you secure financing should it be needed quickly?
A business strategy must be a written document that provides the answer to any questions 2022 throws at you. It should include the following initiatives.
Part of your business strategy for 2022 must include goals. What sales targets must you achieve for growth and profitability? How will you ensure cashflow or funding for projects on your horizon? What training will you implement to ensure your staff members are able to give – and be – their best?
Lower revenues, increased costs and unpredictability have clouded the last two years. In 2022, SMEs should develop a budgeting process that supports vision so your business can not only survive but thrive. Opportunities exist for new ways of doing business – but your budget must be up to the task.
In many cases, ProfitShare Partners has been able to assist SMEs to meet their own budget constraints by bridging the gap between a signed order and payment. When the cost of traditional financing doesn’t fit into your budget, look at alternative funding to provide “new 2022” solutions.
4 Customer service
In the social media age, where “word of mouth” about your business can blaze through communities in mere minutes, you need to ensure customer satisfaction. If you don’t have a social media plan or platform, get one. It is the quickest and most effective way to communicate with your demographic and to monitor how they feel about your products and services.
Keys to focusing on customer satisfaction include:
- Know your customers. Meeting their needs is why you’re in business.
- Offer top-notch service by making sure your whole team under-promises and over-delivers. Never agree to a deadline you won’t meet or to products you don’t have.
- Customer loyalty is key. Give your clients reason to trust you and stick by you during possible business upheavals.
- Participate in online and offline networking events in your industry. People remember your company name when they see your interest in the whole sector.
- Give back to your community. This does not always mean financial donations, but giving youngsters a chance to learn about your business and being seen at community events in areas your business serves.
5 Note and publish who is responsible
Define who is responsible for delivering the results in your 2022 roadmap. Make sure your staff and your clients know who they can call on for specific answers and services.
Create a culture of openness and answerability. Are there financial issues to be dealt with? How are you going to meet your commitments if the supply chain fails you? Who is responsible for communicating with customers and suppliers?
The suggestions ProfitShare Partners has outlined here are a guide to enabling you to create the best business plan you can for 2022, the “be-ready-for-anything” year. It is always best to have as much information in your plans as you possibly can, so you’re able to take on opportunities and give your best to them.
Remember, this is a business plan, not a forecast… You must be able to implement it under whatever circumstances crop up. Importantly, surround yourself with suppliers and service providers who become “partners” in your business. These are the drivers of their own – and your – success.