Merakyat.org – In the ever-evolving landscape of business, small enterprises face a myriad of challenges daily. From technological advancements to financial decisions, the road to success is paved with critical choices. However, insights from executives at some of the world’s leading companies provide a unique perspective on how small businesses can navigate these challenges and achieve growth.
1. Embrace Efficiency
Rich Rao, the Chief Sales Officer at Intuit, emphasizes the importance of efficiency in today’s business environment. With rising costs across the board, Rao suggests that small businesses should aim for a 10% increase in efficiency. This can be achieved by leveraging technology and automation, and by making small changes in operations that cumulatively result in significant gains.
2. Expand Your Network
Ayana Green, Vice President at UPS Ignite, advises small business owners to focus on their strengths and build a robust network to complement their skill set. By seeking out individuals with complementary skills and tapping into resources like local Chamber of Commerce events, businesses can create a supportive ecosystem that fosters growth.
3. Accelerate Cash Flow
Ginger Siegel, Mastercard’s North America Small Business Lead, highlights the importance of improving cash flow. By utilizing technology like contactless payments and tap-on-phone systems, businesses can expedite their payment processes, ensuring a steady cash flow.
4. Innovate in Funding
Michelle Wang from Macy’s underscores the need for small businesses, especially those led by women and diverse founders, to explore alternative funding sources. Programs like Macy’s SPUR Pathways not only offer direct funding but also provide training to entrepreneurs, enabling them to present compelling cases to traditional lenders.
5. Prioritize Privacy
Erica Gartsbeyn of LegalZoom stresses the significance of privacy, especially for businesses operating from home. She recommends services that offer virtual mail and prestigious business addresses to ensure personal information remains protected.
6. Preparation is Key
Kathryn Ross from Accenture emphasizes the importance of preparation and research. Entrepreneurs should be well-informed about potential partners and be genuine in their pitches to build trust.
7. Financial Literacy is Crucial
Laurie Fabiano, President of the Tory Burch Foundation, points out that many entrepreneurs, especially women, lack financial literacy. She urges them to educate themselves and prepare for funding needs in advance.
8. Value the Small Gestures
Marisa Moret from Airbnb believes that small businesses have an advantage in creating intimate connections with their customers. Simple gestures, like leaving a bottle of wine for a guest, can leave a lasting impression and foster loyalty.
9. Strengthen Cybersecurity
Jennifer Van Buskirk from AT&T highlights the vulnerability of small businesses to cybersecurity threats. She recommends creating a vulnerability map and ensuring that all potential weak links are addressed.
10. Embrace the Digital Shift
C.D. Glin, President of the PepsiCo Foundation, emphasizes the importance of digital solutions for small businesses. He suggests that businesses proactively build online ordering systems and improve delivery capacities to adapt to the changing business landscape.
The path to success for small businesses is multifaceted, but with the right strategies and insights, growth is attainable. By embracing efficiency, expanding networks, and prioritizing areas like privacy, financial literacy, and cybersecurity, small businesses can navigate the challenges of the modern business world and achieve sustainable growth.