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  • Rachelle Millar

WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING DURING COVID 19 that TAKES MY BUSINESS FORWARD?


– there is a lot of screaming in the market place at the moment and it is all feeding fear!


Many people have been so busy with their customers that now is the time that they are going to stop and look at their businesses and put all the “should” stuff into place.




BUT WHERE DO THEY START?

What they should NOT do is add to the noise in the market-place!

So whilst it is a great time to have a look at your systems and what you could achieve online.. the purpose of this worksheet is to help you to slow down and look at what to do.

MY BACKGROUND in AUTOMATION/COMPUTING

I started my life in computer science and systems many years ago at a time when everyone SHOULD have a computer system and people would sell very complex systems off the shelf into retail businesses that were way beyond what they needed to achieve the job.

Then I would see overly complex POS Systems rolled out into companies freaking people out about how to move from a cash register into a computer system and EFTPOS functions.

CRM – Customer Relationship Management Systems were another place that people were supposed to automate what they are doing with their customers. I watched as people made the same mistakes with the data going into a CRM that happened with their paper form address books. Requiring a clear clean up.

Later I was a part of implementing and rolling out Learning Management Systems (LMS) into organisations to manage large workforces and their learning predominantly as depositories for ELearning.

I have also been a part of Vero, Xero and MYOB watching as small businesses have struggled with these systems because they will solve the never ending and complex situation with their finances.

Enough about me…this is my opinion

SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS THINK THEY NEED AN AUTOMATED COMPUTER SYSTEM


Before they work out why they needed it in the first place.


It is all backward…. Often they then buy or implement one and have to work these things out after.

They realise that they must manually make decisions on the data that is entered into it. They also have to manually ensure that the data is not corrupt.


Ever seen yourself forget what code when against what expense? Then you create another code for it?! Now your system is not going to be able to report accurately the numbers. Once this is realised then back to manually sorting and sifting through the data to ensure it is correct.


I have seen people spend 10’s of thousands on systems that they really did not need to spend all because someone told them they needed it and because somewhere in our minds we have learnt that to keep up in business what we need is a computer to solve all the parts of our business that we don’t want to do.


Marketing, Accounting, Administration, Sales, Stock Control, Buying or Training Employees.


What they all needed was time to do the function of the business be it servicing a vehicle, selling a widget or educating someone how to be a better leader.

Many small businesses get into business because they are skilled to do the function of that business – Mechanic, Electrician, Plumber, Lawyer, Architect, Engineer & the below case study – A Learning and Development Consultant and Coach.

CASE STUDY EXAMPLE


PROBLEM: Need a CRM system that automatically sends out emails to my customers so that I can keep in contact with them


WHY: Because all of my contact details are currently in my phone

Sounds easy enough… Solution HELP her set up the CRM system. – She works in Wix, explain how she can import all of her contacts into the Marketing system that WIX has connected to her Website.


EASY PEASY… BUT IT DOES NOT SOLVE THE ACTUAL PROBLEM!


Need to dig deeper….


Many people have a whole lot of beliefs operating about what makes them good in business… the belief that we got hold of in here is that if she is not doing what everyone else is doing then she will fall behind and fail. At the moment – this is huge with COVID 19 and the lockdown of non-essential businesses.


So, there is an opportunity right now, whilst she is in lockdown she can do all the things that she should have been doing. Most especially for her sorting out her website and online marketing.


She will feel guilty if she is not looking after her business in this time, moving herself forward. There are some beliefs that may need to be worked on here too. (That is for another post) There are a number of things that we do need to do on a self care basis to keep us healthy and resilient at this time for our families and our business.

THE MARKETING WORKSHEET – FIRST THINGS FIRST

Work out what you want to achieve:-


What is your objective with your current customers?

- Over the Lockdown period?

- Over the next year?

- Five Year plan?

What is your goal for new customers?

- How do you find them?

- How many do you need this year?

- How many new customers do you need over the next Five years?

What goals do you have for your family/you etc?

What goals do you have for your business? (Other than marketing)

- Employ staff?

- Online courses/products (Less requirement of you)