Mar 15, 2012

Organize Your Business

Let me start by saying I'm not currently running a business, I did run a direct sales business in the past and by no means am I an expert!  I learnt a few things in the 4 years of running my business and at times I wish I had known some of the basics before I started.  My hope in writing this post is to maybe help as you start a new business or improve a business you already have up and running.  I also hope to some day be able to apply these tips to my own business again one day.

Ok so first things first, if you haven't yet started a business but are in the planning stages it pays to take your time!!!  I know how exciting it can be especially when you have a great idea and you are geared up to get things started but often times we are over looking a number of key components that set us back even before we get going.   I think it's very important to have things organized first before you start spending money, in the end it is better to have a plan for your business, making knee jerk decisions can cost you more in the end.  So before you organize your business physically organize your thoughts.  Create a business plan of sorts.... the purpose of your business, target audience, brand, marketing, name, budget etc.
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Once you have the concept of your business clear in your mind take some time to get those thoughts on paper so you can look back and tweak things as needed but your original plan is there and easily accessible.  Now you have a clear vision of what your business will be, you're ready to get organized .

To me the most important part of organizing a business is organizing your time.I know for myself if my time is not organized it slips away like quick sand! I'm sure I'm not the only one who has wasted hours away ogling over the pretties of pinterest or reading the oodles of amazing blogs...if we spend our time doing these things we aren't working on our businesses and spending the time required in order to be successful.  For me the best way to organize my time is by writing things out and planning my time, the best way for me to do that is in a planner or daytimer.  On each day I write what it is I need to get done and when there is a long list I set how much time I will spend on each project or task.  This helps me keep on track and helps me move forward in the tasks.

The area that I really struggled with when I was running my direct sales business was organizing my costs, sales and orders.  I think this is part, if not the main reason, my previous business didn't succeed.  Organizing this part of your business is super important if you want to be successful.  I don't have a perfect way of doing this but I have come across some very good suggestions from some very wise and successful women.  I am going to share a couple of tools that I think would be very beneficial.  Both these resources are from Emily at Emmarie Designs.
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This Roadmap is a great tool to plan your business and what your goals are throughout the years.  This is a great way to see if you are on track and what you need to be working on next.
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This Revenue Forecast is a great way to plan your year finically and make realistic goals for yourself but then it also helps track your actually sales and the difference between your goal and the actual income.  As you go through the years you will also see your profit up to that point helping to ensure that you are on track, falling short or if you're doing better then expected.

There are so many other things that are racing through my mind but I think I will leave it at that today.  I hope this information was helpful to you and maybe you learnt something new.  Just remember that although there may be challenges when organizing your business, especially when you are just getting started, there is no one right way to do things so try and figure out what works best for you but never give up and keep pushing on!
   

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