Rome wasn’t built in a day, probably because it was built with longevity in mind. Building a business from the ground up is challenging on its own; scaling a sustainable business that can live well into the future is another goliath. Navigating a pandemic has not only pivoted how many (existing) businesses operate but has also prompted budding entrepreneurs to reimagine their approach to building and scaling brands. In a sea of content detailing top tips entrepreneurs should know, the recurring thread over the past 2 years has been the importance of building a business for the future – anchored in an agile business model that is resilient and can survive in any climate. Whether you’re thinking of finally setting that business plan into motion or you’re already a seasoned entrepreneur, the first quarter of the year is a great opportunity to reassess your business plan and approach, make adjustments or fasten up any loose ends where necessary – but what should you look out for? These top 7 tips will set you on the right path.
First things first, what does a future-proofed business look like?
Ever heard of businesses that had great potential but somehow didn’t last in the long haul? Above turbulent economies and fluctuating markets, some businesses’ downfall can be attributed to a lack of planning for the future. Simply put, future-proofing is all about thinking ahead, planning your business for the future. This involves the process of anticipating the future and developing methods and strategies to ease potential curveballs that come with certain events. Most importantly, future-proofing is not a quick fix; it’s an ongoing plan that requires constant tweaking and reassessment. Here’s what you need to know about building a business for the future:
- Get your finances in order
Changes in the economy can have intense financial implications for your business. Getting your finances in order and maintaining healthy finances in your business helps you do exactly that. Most businesses flounder at the sight of trouble; in most cases, due to poor financial planning. Change is inevitable, especially in a rapidly evolving market, filled with disruptive technologies and events. Getting your finances in order is an important part of future-proofing your business to stay afloat when the storm hits.
- Get moving on your digitisation strategy
Digitisation has been a buzzword in many conversations around businesses and scaling a brand, and rightfully so. Digitisation is more than just another buzzword, it’s about doing what you have been doing, but incorporating technology and digital strategies to make it more efficient. Running an efficient business is key to growth, and digital technologies allow employers and employees to work efficiently and boost productivity. As the world increasingly evolves into a global community, digitisation plays an important role in allowing brands to tap into and reach wider audiences, as well as expanding products and services across borders.
- Get your brand out there
Marketing your business is critical to its growth. People won’t know about all the amazing work your brand does if you don’t make the effort to introduce them to it. For upcoming entrepreneurs, this may sound like thousands in money spent on marketing and advertising efforts. However, this is why having a digital strategy is important. Part of your digitisation plan should include digital marketing. The best part is that marketing your brand can be done anywhere in the world without having to spend thousands on hiring and overhead costs associated with having a full-time employee. Outsourcing a Marketing Manager to take care of your digital marketing is an affordable step in the right direction.
- Stay on the pulse of trends in your industry
Marketing efforts are missed if you don’t understand what your market needs and how your industry has changed. Trends come and go. It’s important to constantly keep in the loop as things change, so you can stay on top of your game and be ready to modify your products/services where necessary, so you can meet the needs of the market in your industry at all times. Is there new technology on the market? Are certain brands selling better than others? You need to be on top of this, otherwise you will quickly be overtaken by more insightful business owners.
- Build an innovative and agile brand
Avoid capping your growth and limiting the possibilities available to you. Innovation should be at the heart of everything you do. The more you innovate and create an environment that drives and encourages creativity, the more you expand your thinking as a brand and unlock new opportunities that will take you to new heights. Businesses of the future are agile, whether it’s in the form of product creation or work methods, these are the pioneers who break out of the mould and remain open to the possibility of having to reinvent the wheel as required by the market.
- Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst
A very sombre piece of advice, but also necessary. If there’s anything we’ve learned from 2020, it’s that life is truly unpredictable. You won’t always be able to see into the future but your business structure can be as secure as possible. Start thinking about whether or not your current ways of working will be able to seamlessly continue if you were to permanently move away from the traditional office environment. How do you ensure maximum productivity and efficiency at all times?
- Don’t be afraid to reinvent the (hiring) wheel
The rise of satellite offices and work-from-home structures has prompted many businesses to rethink their approach to working and the hiring process. Is it necessary to have all of your staff on site? How do you go about hiring the right talent with reference to your business goals in the long run? These are some of the key questions you should ask when it comes to securing the right talent and structuring your business model, bearing your employees in mind.
Building a business for the future
Evidently, a lot goes into building a resilient business that can sustain itself in the face of a storm. Whether you’re a budding entrepreneur or seasoned in your journey, it’s important to remember that businesses that do not become accustomed to change soon will face the verge of extinction. Let innovation be at the heart of what you do, and lead with the future in mind.
Beren saat is a content writer and digital strategist at Viralmich.She has written numerous articles and blog posts on topics related to Social Media Marketing.Her well-organized and analytical nature keeps projects running smoothly and makes her a vital component of our SEO team