The most reliable way for you to speed up a business process is to anticipate problems before they take place and prepare a solution beforehand. While this may sound like something too complex, it’s actually just a matter of experience.
Here lies a major problem, seeing as how a first-time entrepreneur may be unable to pull this off. This means that a method wouldn’t be as efficient as a permanent solution. Fortunately, you don’t have to learn from your own mistakes in order to acquire experience, and here are five tips that come from all over the business world.
Outsource everything that you can
Whenever you can delegate a task to someone else, make sure that you use this opportunity. You see, it’s not just that you can’t handle a certain task. It’s that you A) don’t have to and B) probably won’t be efficient at it. A carpenter would make a table 4-5 times quicker than a layman or someone making an attempt at a DIY project for the first time.
The same thing goes for any specialist, and as a business, you’ll need services of a lot of specialists. Some things that you should outsource are your IT security and maintenance, HR and customer support. We’re not necessarily talking about time-saving in the traditional sense either. Every mistake needs to be rectified (therefore, the time has to be wasted fixing it) and specialists make fewer mistakes.
Prepare a solution for a cash flow problem
A cash flow problem is something that every business encounters sooner or later. Make sure that you’re ready for it. First of all, you need to use your profit to make an emergency/savings fund. This way, you’ll be able to give your business a capital injection without having to look for loans or sell assets.
If this doesn’t work, you can always consider factoring. This is a concept that requires you to sell some of your invoices for cash. Other than this, you can also look for traditional loans. If people owe you money, you might want to ask it back. In a scenario where this happens too often, you should probably enlist the help of a debt collection agency.
Have documentation prepared in advance
The next thing you need to consider is how to make sure that all your agreements are legally binding as soon as possible. Making verbal agreements is a trick that a lot of inexperienced entrepreneurs just walk into. This is not always due to their naivety as much is it due to desperation. A first-time entrepreneur is usually in a tight spot during the earliest stages of their business.
Still, there’s a way around this and the key lies in being able to present your partners with legally binding documentation as soon as possible. This way you can either get yourself a more secure position or see that the other party isn’t as serious. To facilitate these processes even further, you can look for business document templates online and have them printed out in advance.
Use cloud-based solutions whenever possible
You need to understand that your team works through more than one device, so try to keep it all in one place with the help of cloud-based solutions. Instead of having to wait until your star employee returns from holiday, you can have them log into their collaboration tool from half a world away and check how things are going.
This, of course, doesn’t mean that you should pester them while they’re relaxing with their loved ones, but just having this option in a moment of crisis can be quite reassuring. Also, not having to drag them back to the office on short notice also helps quite a bit.
Have a contingency plan
The first thing that everyone will tell you when you’re first joining the business world is that you should prepare for things going south. The first way in which you can do this is to have multiple streams of income. This way, even if one of your products fails miserably, you can just pivot to something more profitable and move from there.
Nonetheless, you need to prepare for success, as well. Sometimes, unexpected growth is just as dangerous. Therefore, you need to have a contingency plan for success, as well.
As you can see, these five steps are not there to prepare you for the unexpected. They’re there to prepare you for scenarios that you’re bound to encounter on your path towards success.
The quicker you manage to overcome them, the better the end result will be and the more efficient your company will become. For you as an entrepreneur, this increases the chances of survival in the business world.