The Biggest Challenges Facing Businesses Today

SEO

Seasoned business or a fledgeling startup, we all face common challenges, how we respond to those challenges can either determine the success or continued success of that business.

As we approach the defining halfway mark of 2018, many businesses find themselves in a position of reflecting on their business progress, successes or failures. Analysis of your business achievements and ongoing targets should be regularly reviewed on a quarterly basis.

We look at the most common challenges that many businesses face today and those challenges that all too often can lead to a business’s demise.

Funding & Cashflow

Few would disagree that a lack of funding in any business venture can be disturbing to say the least, compensating for that lack of funding can often stagnate a businesses progression making it difficult to achieve its original objectives.

When starting a new business or business venture, it is essential to consider the objectives from the outset, set targeted milestones and budget accordingly while also allowing for potential mishaps or unforeseen expenses and hurdles which often unfold when implementing any business plan.

With any venture, budgeting and keeping expenses to a minimum requires a balanced approach, be wary of the temptation to cut costs in areas which make you or your business more efficient, remember when it comes to time vs money most business will sight time as being their least available resource.

When it comes to tightening your businesses cash flow, it is crucial to analyse areas which represent overheads, services or tools of the trade which fail to provide a benefit or a return on profit need closer examination.

Productivity & Overheads

The are many tools and subscription services available to your business which are designed to lighten your workflow and make your company more efficient; often these tools can come with a costly monthly subscription. If a service is saving your business a considerable amount of time more often than not, then the cost is typically a worthwhile and sustainable expense.
If your business can function without a particular service, it is likely that service is an overhead. Often clients subscribe to various online tools with limited ability to fully benefit from the insights provided to them within their industry or marketplace, justifying the cost of these tools can often be hard to quantify under these circumstances.

Processes

Having a streamlined process for your day to day operations is extremely important when it comes to a marketing perspective, it is imperative to ensure that you are maximising your efforts and that of your staff. One of the most significant setbacks of a small business is having adequate, skilled team with the various technological skill sets required in the workplace.

Choosing the right staff for the task and outsourcing tasks when and where in-house resources are insufficient is often the cheaper alternative and empowers business owners and managers with the ability to focus their time in areas which their skills provide the most benefit.

Motivation

Keeping motivated on a daily basis with the array of interruptions and hurdles that we have to navigate on a seemingly regular basis can be challenging in itself. A saying that I particularly like is; “Don’t Limit Your Challenges, Challenge Your Limits”. We naturally feel more enthusiastic when we see positive results from our work, keeping motivation high is the underlying element of success.

If your motivation or that of your team ebbs, don’t be afraid to take breaks along the way, go for walks and give yourself and that of your team, time to refocus and become reinvigorated. Keeping ourselves motivated and that of our team is paramount to success.

Time & Fatigue

One of the most common complaints business owners make is the lack of adequate time. In today’s high-paced business environment, it is easy to become overwhelmed with responsibilities and workload causing time management to become a deep-rooted problem.

Even with the array of tools available to us at a personal and business level to streamline the manner in which we work; manage ourselves and our employees, small business owners are very much aware of the problem of not having sufficient resources. Working extended hours over time results in fatigue, loss of motivation, frustration, anger and lapses of judgement which can lead to catastrophic mistakes.

Marketing

Consistent action produces consistent results, without dispute the life-force of any business is its marketing arm.

The elixir of a successful marketing strategy encompasses a marketable product as much as a well-founded advertising campaign. The combined efforts of marketing professionals, digital designers, content creators, social media and pay-per-click professionals and a well-rounded SEO strategy.

Finding the right balance of marketing mix for your business can represent a real challenge and requires ongoing analytical analysis.

Retention

Staff turnover is a real challenge for all businesses; employees are encouraged to move out and move up, continually seeking more pay, and new opportunities, like Gypsies employees, roam from one company to another with devotion seemingly to have vanished as to have the days of old.

Staff turnover causes a significant impact on businesses, damaging workplace morale, deteriorates service and negatively impacts business profitability.

Changing Technology

With over 3 billion people globally connected the flow of technology into homes, business and at a personal level as almost reach saturation levels, few would argue of the impact that these changes have had in the way we conduct business, interact socially and even how were educated. Even amongst the elderly, there are now over 4 in 10 seniors who have a smartphone.

The upshot of this is that every business has had to implement change over the last two decades, those that have not had either fallen by the wayside or lost significant market share, regardless of the industry, the pace which technology has impacted the global marketplace has been nothing short of phenomenal.

Connections

Over the last decade, businesses have been advised repeatedly by online marketing professionals, influencers, search engine and leading industry specialists of the importance of branching out and developing new relationships with aligned business leaders, industry influencers and marketing specialists in their field.

Today’s media platforms such as Facebook, Linkedin, Instagram and Pinterest have all become voice boxes for individuals, managers, team leaders and even political entities. Our lives for better or worse have become embroiled in what is described best as a technological battlefield. Many individuals have become disgruntled as the lack-lustre efforts in pursuing social awareness has done little to translate to any direct benefit to their business.

Despite these technological advances, the proliferation of analytical tools which has been made available to us, enabling us to splice, dice and segment every facet of our advertising efforts and competitive analysis, the tools do little more for many businesses than add an extra layer of complexity.

Conclusion

While many businesses will have individually overcome some of the challenges mentioned, the majority of us can relate to the difficulties experienced in trying to overcome these challenges.

For the most part, the underlying factor that limits most businesses today is the lack of time, which ultimately translates to a monetary sum and a limiting factor in the progression of their business, the question of course for many business owners is how can we overcome this.

While no band-aid solution overcomes all of these challenges, there are similarities in the problems which seem to be a stumbling block for many business owners regardless of the industry or sector.

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