Image by: NEC Corporation of America
By Alexa Hughes
Like making decisions in life, making decisions in business is not always clear cut and easy. Added to your own involvement there is generally money on the line, your reputation, and a lot of other people who are counting on you to lead the way. Here are some business decisions that are never easy to make at the time and how to make sure you do them right.
“Chaos in the world brings uneasiness, but it also allows the opportunity for creativity and growth.” -Tome Barrett, U.S. Politician
On one hand why wouldn’t you want to expand your business if it’s going well? On the other hand, expanding brings a whole new set of responsibilities and complications into the mix. One of the largest changes you might be mulling over around expanding your business, is the fact that you be delegating more work to other people instead of overseeing every level of your business every step of the way.
When you are considering expanding, the key is to make sure that you have the tools and resources to expand well so that you can feel more confident that you are doing the right thing. Expanding requires the funds for hiring new people, and it might require adding more product options to what you currently sell, or even partnering with other more established companies.
#2) Firing People
“A wise man once said that a person is known by the company he keeps, but could then also add that the character of the company is known by the people it keeps for the longest days, especially at the strategic decision making level.” ― Anuj Somany
Being in the position where you feel it’s right to fire someone can be very challenging, especially in a small business. The fewer employees you have working for you the more personal it can feel when it’s time to let someone go. And of course there will always be a part of you questioning whether it is the right decision in case you don’t find a decent replacement.
To make sure that you’re firing someone for the right reasons, make sure that you’re leading with your head. Getting along with people can be challenging even in the best of situations so sometimes hiccups occur that aren’t quite as horrible as they might seem in the heat of the moment. On the flip side, you shouldn’t be letting a subpar employee get away with not doing job well simply because you have a bond.
“The other part of outsourcing is this: it simply says where the work can be done outside better than it can be done inside, we should do it.” –Alphonso Jackson
If your business is growing then there might be a time when you start to consider whether it would be wiser to outsource some of your work as opposed to doing it all in house with new staff. No one can really know when the right time to outsource is if ever, so it’s just one of those decisions you’ll have to make carefully.
Things to consider are the differences in costs, and what sort of roles could be done well by someone out of house and which are crucial to have more involvement and supervision. Things like sales for example are generally done best in house, while something like accounting can more efficiently be outsourced
#4) Changing Prices
“Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.” –Warren Buffett
Pricing your products or services can be a challenging endeavor at every step of the way. Generally you want to start with something and stick with it, but if you underestimated the value at the beginning you will certainly need to adjust it as you grow to make sure you’re turning a reasonable profit. A good way to start thinking about prices is to compare your product to another one that’s similar on the market. If a comparable product is selling for much higher than yours you should consider why.
There’s nothing wrong with being the company that is the cheapest option, but it should make sense from all angles and not be losing you money. You should also be aware of the kind of prices that your target market can afford to make sure that you don’t end up losing money by cutting out a bunch of potential customers.
Are in the position where its time to make some changes to your business but you’re feeling the stressors about it? Let us know your experiences about how the process affects your decision making for the better!