It’s a new year and a new start for many. Many people changed career paths with the new working environments, leading some feeling like they’d be better off running their own business. With the world coming out of lockdown now, the demand for work is increasing and the labour market is booming.
But how do you do it? How do you take that massive first step to becoming your own boss and running your business?
The Entourage helps people like you start a business, grow a business, and take it to a 6, 7 or 8-figure juggernaut.
This article is your complete guide on starting a business in Australia in 2022. Here you will find free resources, templates, courses we run to help you with your marketing, sales, and leadership training. We will discuss the ongoing challenges with COVID in the business world and give you answers to many of the common questions asked about how to start a business.
In a rush? Skip ahead below.
- The Idea
- People In Your Business
- The Business Structure
- Money & Finances
- Marketing & Sales
- The Competition
- Other Common Problems
The Business Idea Or Product
Before you go into business for yourself, you need an idea. Can you do something better than the competition? Can you solve a common problem? Is there a gap in the market needing to be filled?
How to come up with a business idea?
Unless you want to buy into a franchise, your business needs to stand out from the crowd. It needs to service an industry, or a niche, that is in demand.
Some questions you need to ask yourself:
Does your idea solve a problem?
Simple marketing says solve a problem someone doesn’t know they have. Look at Uber. A ride-share idea that let anyone with a car, offer to drive you anywhere you wanted to go. Kind of like a taxi, but with a cheaper cost to enter for the driver, and hence a cheaper fare for the passenger.
Did we know we needed cheaper options for a ride? Not until Uber showed us.
Think, do you have a solution to a problem?
How big is the opportunity?
If the problem you have only targets a niche market, is it worth investing time or money in starting up a business? If the solution can be scaled up to cover more people, perhaps it could be a good idea, or if the solution solves a big and costly problem for that niche market, it could also be worth your time.
Is it a trend, a fad, or a growing market?
Is this idea going to serve something right now or something long-term?
A fad is something that grows quickly in popularity and then drops just as quickly. If you can get on board quickly enough, you can get some quick wins. Stay too long and it could cost you big time. Think fidget spinners.
A trend is something that can grow as quickly as a fad, but lasts a lot longer. Think of Crossfit and the Ninja Warrior craze. Many personal trainers and gyms converted to provide facilities to train for these two extreme kinds of fitness. The trend of Crossfit has lapsed from the popular market, and Ninja Warrior is only on once a year, so demand is not as strong.
A growing market is on the way up — a great chance for you to get onboard this opportunity and reap some rewards.
For example, with the opening up of countries thanks to COVID vaccinations, the inbound travel industry in Australia is booming. According to Ibis World, there is a projected 4280% revenue growth for 2022-2023 for Inbound Tour Operators. Do you have an idea for a tour, or something supporting tours?
Think about current trends in the world, economy, or your local environment too.
Can you do it better than someone else?
Opening a new business and being just as good as someone else is often not enough.
Do some competitor research. Discover what they do and then do it better than them. Or, find a gap in the market that isn’t being serviced, and enter the market right there. Can you remember a little company named Uber?
Don’t be afraid to run your idea past some friends or a business coach. You can find some wonderful insights from people who are not directly involved with your project. They can help refine the idea for you.
Our business coaches are an excellent source of insightful feedback as well.
Like what you've read here? Learn how you can improve on your product or service offering and delivery with us.
Test the idea
Many entrepreneurs wait too long to start. The best way to test an idea is to just get started. Set up an A/B split test, get moving, and ask customers for feedback about your new product or service. React and pivot based on feedback. This way, you’re moving, you’ve taken the first big leap, and you’re getting your business up and running!
Begin by asking yourself some questions, and answer them honestly.
- Why do you want to be in business? What is driving you? Why is this idea so important that you want to go into business to bring it to life? “Why” is the most important question you can ask and will shape your company's long-term vision eventually. It can find the passion behind what you’re doing, illuminate your drive and determination, and help you understand your motivation.
- What problem(s) do you solve? Again, be honest. The problem can be anything from local access to a product and service to a niche problem. If you’re struggling to find the problem and solution, is your idea big enough?
- What resources do I have? Do you need to borrow a lot of money to purchase resources? Do you need to hire people? Do you need a lot of resources to get this idea off the ground? Or, can you get the idea going with fewer resources now, and grow into it later?
- Who is my target audience? Who are you selling to? Who will buy what you’re selling? The answer is not ‘everyone’, or ‘anyone who needs this’. Then you ask- well, who needs this?
- What are my goals? While the first question is about where you begin (why?), this question discusses where you are heading. What do you want to achieve with your idea? Do you want to help communities? Save the rainforest? Are you building the business up to sell and retire early? Link this to your why, and you will not only have a powerful internal drive and motivation to your vision, but you'll start to be able to craft your 12-month roadmap too.
We also recommend speaking to qualified people about your idea. A business coach is a great person to talk to. They can help with the questions and other foundation issues to help you understand if your idea is a good one or a great one.
Our team at The Entourage have a wide network of business coaches with been-there-done-that experience across 150+ industries helping business owners across Australia just like to grow and scale their business into 6, 7 and 8-figures in revenue, and beyond.
At the end of the day, if the idea is brilliant and a potential profit machine, it will take your hard work and dedication to turn the idea into a scalable and sustainable business.
Read more about testing your business idea here.
Make the product or service
You think you have a good idea. You’ve answered some honest questions about it, and you’ve asked your friends what they think.
You now need to bring a product or service to market. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but it does need to be an MVP – a Minimum Viable Product. Bring something to market that doesn’t cost a lot of money, but won’t crash your cash reserves if it flops.
There are 3 main elements with product design:
- Functionality - Does it work how it's supposed to? Is it easy to understand and operate? Does it solve the problem logically and easily? What does your product do?
- Appearance - How does your product look? Are there brand colours, or a brand look? l. Is the product appealing to look at? Does it look professional or fun and crazy? Will the look appeal to your target audience?
- Quality - Will it stand the test of time? Is the price tag reflective of how good the product or service is? Are there other guarantees to back up your claims of quality, such as years of experience and knowledge? Would those in the know feel that what you offer is quality, and good value?
This is just the tip of the iceberg for product design. There are a lot of elements to think about prior to bringing a product to market and once it's released, such as creating an awesome value proposition, and how to design a new product. If you need capital, you'll need to learn about getting investors interested in your business idea, and then how you can patent that idea as well.
Let us show you how you can start to get investors for your business idea right here.
People And Business
This will be your business, your idea, so it’s your baby. Unless you’re a sole trader doing all the work yourself, you will need help. This will be in the form of other people. Choosing who you work with and bring into the fold is incredibly important.
- What role will they take in the business?
- What legally can and can’t they do with your business?
- What happens if the people you bring in aren't suited?
- Can you find someone to help you and support you, without bringing them directly into the business right away?
You might not be bringing in a new employee to work directly with you, but you could be looking for someone who can support you with knowledge or resources or access to markets beyond your own.
Your first instinct with a business partner should not be one who can bring in the most money. You want a business partner who shares the same goals and visions as you do.
This is a long-term relationship with binding legal contracts. You will have to get along with your business partner or partners.
What to look for in a business partner?
- Someone who brings skills and experience to benefit the business. They have to have a positive input into the business, bring something that you might not have, for the benefit of the business. They might be your best mate, but if they can’t bring something of value to the business, after time, you will resent them having a stake in your idea.
- Someone who shares your vision. If you see your business growing slowly, with local products and services, and your business partner can see accelerated international growth, you’re going to hit friction and conflict.
- Someone who does not have financial or emotional baggage. Despite your best intentions, they will eventually drag that baggage into the business. Any financial issues from the past could potentially tear your idea and business apart. Any considerable emotional baggage from the past could impact their effectiveness as a partner as well.
Unsure of how to pick the best business partner to suit you and your business's needs? Let us guide you.
It might sound like a great thing when someone is willing to invest in your idea and give you seed capital, but make sure you understand the legal relationship you’re getting yourself into.
An investor becomes a part of your business. They can influence who else may invest in you, and they can give you access to different parties or other pools of money.
Even if you borrow $5000 from a friend as start-up capital, make sure you have some clearly drawn-out legal documents laying out their involvement and influence with the business, if there is a repayment plan or an ongoing dividend payout.
Investing in a lawyer is often a good idea when creating things like a Shareholder's Agreement, as well as other legal considerations like employee agreements and more.
Struggling to find investors who are willing to invest in your business? Here's what you need to do to find the right investor for your business.
The lifeblood of your business are your employees. They interpret your dream and vision and carry it forth. They speak your brand to everyone they meet and help with the smooth, day-to-day running of your business.
- Who do you hire? Do you look for an expert with experience, or someone who is keen to learn and has a great attitude?
- Do you hire a casual? They cost more per hour, but you save money on sick leave and annual leave. If they don't fit your company you can end their employment easier.
- Do you hire full time employees? Lock in some employees, with all the benefits and guarantee of work. This can breed loyalty, but if they don’t fit, it can be difficult to remove them.
- Do you hire for skill or “vibe”? A big component of hiring these days is how well the person fits the tone and mood of the business. It makes sense if you’re spending 8 hours a day with this person that you get along with them.
You want to check for compatibility with you and your company’s brand and culture, and ensure that your management style fits what culture you want to create.
The hiring process also needs some legal paperwork. Understand the rights of the employees and the wages due to be paid. Have a trial period that is long enough for you to assess if they’re the right fit for you.
You might not be ready to hire right now, and that is okay. It is still good to consider these questions so you’re prepared for when the time comes.
The Business Structure
Depending on what your idea is and how you bring it to market, you will need to set your business up differently. If it is a small idea and can be run by just you then you’d be a Sole Trader. If It’s an idea that you can scale upwards in the future, you should consider a Company or a Trust.
How to set up your business
You’re ready to start the ball rolling. The paperwork, the administration, the paperwork, all to get yourself ready for business. What do you need?
- An ABN - An Australian Business Number is a unique numerical ID for your business. It's what the ATO uses to identify your business. They're also free to register.
- Tax Registration - Depending on what type of business you set up will determine the kind of tax registration you will need. Check with a registered tax agent on what you need here and register before setting up. It makes paying tax much easier going forward.
- Licences and Permits - Do you have a liquor licence? Are there zoning laws where your business is going to be located? Check with the ATO, your local council, and online to avoid being penalised for not having the correct documentation.
- Registering your business type -
- Are you a sole trader? You will be legally responsible for all aspects of your business.
- Do you have a company which is a legally separate entity from you? You can have company assets and have some legal protection of your personal assets if things go badly.
- Is your business is partnership made up of 2 or more people who share profit and loss and liability?
- Does your business run as a trust, where a trustee acts on behalf of the trust?
- Trademark your business - Protect your business name and brand from being used by someone else.
Be aware of the laws
Unless your new business is, in fact, business law, then you probably don't know all the laws involved with starting a business. However, it is good to be aware of them, and it is a good idea to have a lawyer who is well versed in business and corporate law.
- Do you need to register for GST? As a sole trader, you don’t need to register for GST until you reach a minimum of $75 000 income per annum. However, many choose to register to appear larger than they actually are. That is some strategic thinking.
- What is the legal rate of pay for your employees? You need to know the award wage for your employees. There have been many examples, particularly in the hospitality industry, of staff being underpaid, with dire consequences for the businesses who did the underpaying.
- Do you understand your PAYG responsibilities? You need to understand super contributions, and tax rates, how to fill out a pay slip. Having a bookkeeper help you is a good idea.
- What do you include in an employee contract? You absolutely need legal advice for contracts. You can include clauses about restriction of trade if an employee leaves, relationships between employees and more. A contract of employment can really cover yourself if relationships sour.
- You need to be aware of laws. Do you know much about the Australian Consumer Laws? How about the Competition and Consumer Act? We don’t suggest getting a law degree to understand them fully, just be aware of them and the key points.
You will find there are a lot of laws surrounding businesses, from the products and services you offer, to laws and regulations with who and how you employ someone. Understanding them will give you some foresight if an issue arises. Having an expert in your corner can save you time, money, and headache if something legal were to arise.
How to pick a name for your business
The name you choose needs to either be personal for you, or related to the industry you are in. And it needs to leave nothing to the imagination about what you do.
Make it easy to pronounce and easy to remember.
Do an online search for any businesses with a similar name and compare.
Grab the online domains for your business before you start your website.
Write a business plan
Benjamin Franklin said, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”
It is particularly relevant to you starting a business. How will you know where your business is going or how to measure any success if you don’t have a plan for your business long-term as well as a 12-month roadmap? It would be like going for a sail across the ocean and just hoping to find a port on the other side.
A business plan can help give direction and purpose for your idea. It will help you set objectives and help prove if your idea is viable.
A business plan also helps when introducing other people to your business, such as investors. It can clarify your business’s vision and give a measuring stick to where along the journey your business is, and how much it could be worth if you sold the business.
Here's how you can write a business plan that will set you up for success here.
Want to read more? Click one of the links below
Money & Finances
A business needs money. Cash to start up the business, and cash flow to keep moving and growing. A business can only survive on love for so long.
Cash flow is the lifeblood of your business. There are many factors when looking at cash flow, and keeping it running in the right direction.
- Customers paying your invoices on time
- Contractors who do work for you, and the invoices you must pay
- Supply chain issues, not getting materials in on time to keep up with demand
- Costs of labour and materials
- Wages & superannuation
The differences between money coming in and money going out can often mean the difference between success or falling down with debt and troubles.
Ideally, you want the money coming in to be more than the money going out.
There are ways you can be prepared for cash flow issues, even if you’re starting your business. Engaging the services of an accountant or bookkeeper with industry experience can help. They have worked with clients before and can predict costs going forward and help you budget.
Talking about money can be very intimidating. How much do you need to start your business, and how much do you need to maintain it profitably. We’ll start with the first question and look at some options.
Learn our top 8 tips for managing startup cash flow.
Are you funding it yourself, getting an investor, or applying for a business loan?
There are many different options for finding cash to start up your business. Depending on your personal situation and finances, some options can be better than others.
Funding the business yourself
This is both an ideal situation and one of the scariest options out there.
It’s great because it's your money, and you’re not in debt to any person or institution. No outside party has a piece of your pie. You are accountable to no one when it comes to making the day-to-day decisions of your business.
The scary part of this can be - it is YOUR money. You probably saved a lot to get to this stage of launching a business. Perhaps you were gifted money from the Bank of Mum and Dad. The success of the business is now very personal for you, and you can go above and beyond to ensure that success.
Getting a business loan
If you’re eligible, a business loan can be an excellent way to find funding. You have to prove to the lending institution that your business idea is viable. This makes you think harder about your business than if you financed it yourself. You have to do some cold, hard assessing of your idea.
Depending on how you set up your business, as a company or trust, if it folds, you can have a lot more financial protection from the banks, and possibly be able to keep your assets and a roof over your head.
Read more about what to consider before applying for a business loan here.
Getting investor help
There are many people out there with money to invest in ideas. Why not get some investors to put some money into your business? They share the risk and the reward with you. They will also have a piece of your pie, and can potentially direct your business in directions you’re not happy with.
This idea of crowdfunding has grown in popularity. It is where you raise funds for a project, through public investment.
- You can have reward crowdfunding, where you promise different rewards for different funding levels. Think Kickstarter.
- Debt-crowdfunding is where you receive money and pay it back over time. Sometimes this kind of loan is better than a bank loan.
- Finally, there is equity crowdfunding, where you give a portion of your business to those who fund it.
Crowdfunding is good from the point of view that the people who are financing your idea are passionate about it. They want to give you money for your idea, they support you.
Unsure of how crowdfunding might work for you? One option is through equity crowdfunding, one of the most underrated ways to raise capital, and it starts with your potential customers. Hear how equity crowdfunding could work for you and your business on crowdfunding platform Birchal with their Founder Matt Vitale on our podcast, The Make It Happen Show.
These are people who give a startup a go. They provide financial backing for entrepreneurs, small startups, people they want to see succeed. Think Shark Tank, with fewer teeth. It can be a one-time startup injection of cash, or it can be an ongoing stream of funds. The motives are often more altruistic, which is why they are considered angels.
All growth is sales and marketing led. If no one knows who you are (marketing), how can they buy from you (sales)? How can they tell their friends about you (marketing)? Marketing starts with knowing who you are, what your brand is, and then taking that brand out into the world. Often the best way to take your brand to the world is through digital marketing - social media, YouTube, SEO strategies, and content strategies.
Understanding your brand and sticking to it
Branding is the act of giving meaning to your business. Sounds a bit too deep? Let’s think about it. Your brand is more than the colours you choose for your logo or the font choice on your website. Your branding includes your company values, and how you embody those values in everything you do in the name of your business.
Branding is how someone feels when they use your products and services. Are you solid and dependable, are you good for the soul, or are you fun and free-spirited?
With The Entourage, we want to sound knowledgeable, confidant like we know what we’re talking about, but we don't want to be talking down to you. We want to leave you understanding something. You’ll take away some knowledge and encouragement. We also want to leave you smiling, entertained with what you’ve just read.
Branding gives potential customers an idea of what to expect from you. The language your brand uses, how you set yourself apart from your competition, all of this sets up a premise of how awesome you’re going to be. It gives an expectation about how well you’re going to help solve a customer’s problem. And if you live up to your branding, then you’ll leave a great impression in the customer’s mind, which they will share (word-of-mouth marketing) with their friends and family online.
What type of marketing is best suited for your business?
There are different kinds of marketing, but you need to know which is best for you and will bring you the best ROI.
Some more traditional options include the below:
- Live events - Great for people to sample your wares and get to know you. And you get registration details for event follow-up marketing.
- Letterbox drop - Perfect for local marketing.
- Free samples - Everyone likes a free sample but could be a little costly. Good for products just launching to market without much brand recognition.
- Survey marketing - Stopping people on the street to answer some questions, or to try a product and give feedback. It may not appeal to some people, but the immediacy is incredible.
However, it's essential that you do not neglect digital marketing as well. Spreading the word about your business online is the best way to do marketing in the modern day and age.
Social media marketing
Over 9 million Australians use Facebook everyday. With the advertising tools available, you can keenly target your audience, both on Facebook and Instagram. It is where people talk about brands they love and hate, and it is where you can have a conversation with your customers.
There are other social media channels, such as Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, YouTube and more. It can seem overwhelming which channel to choose, how to keep up with the quick pace of social media.
We have a free social media & content marketing planner template to help you out. You can use free scheduling software to keep a handle on things too.
Have more questions about social media marketing? Read all about how to use the different social media platforms to market your business in our blog.
All advertising has a cost associated, including social media. In this element, we refer to radio and media advertising, pay-per-click Google ads, items with a clearly defined cost.
The good thing about these kinds of efforts is it is easy to measure effectiveness. Count the number of visitors to a specific landing page, or tally the amount of coin from a marketing campaign using a code. How much did the campaign cost versus how much money it brought in?
There can be a rapid deployment of paid advertising with a similarly quick Return-On-Investment (ROI. However, the costs can spiral if you’re bidding for expensive words or trying to hit peak times for media advertising.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) marketing is excellent for long term marketing growth. It's very effective at bringing you high-intent customers to your website from Google and other search engines. However, it can take a while to bring in the rewards.
If you’re online and have a digital component to your marketing, then you need to have SEO as part of your marketing mix.
Some simple SEO you can start with are page titles reflecting what's on the page or a regularly published blog containing relevant keywords to what you do or sell in the heading structure and content. Write the meta descriptions for your web pages, up to 160 characters, with a keyword contained within.
You may be surprised to know that even with all the social media out there, email marketing is still highly effective. Campaign Monitor says that for every $1 spent on email marketing, it generates an amazing $38 ROI.
Have a sign-up landing page with a free offer. Have people sign up for your newsletter. If you hold an event, include a sign-in sheet to grab details.
Start a regular newsletter, have an email campaign for people who shop with you or abandon their shopping carts. Have a thank you email for making a purchase. Don’t do the hard sell, rather be informative, entertaining and soft sell through emails.
Regular email contact keeps you and your brand front of mind for when a customer is ready to buy.
Traditional marketing techniques
Even in the wild and wonderful world of digital marketing, traditional marketing techniques can still work as mentioned previously.
- Letterbox drop - This works well for local businesses. Catalogues can sit on a table for days and then remind someone to take action.
- Networking events - Mingle with business people who could be your customers or could refer you business through word-of-mouth.
- Billboards and signage - If you can get a quick message and gripping imagery, billboards are still a popular and effective way to market yourself. QR codes on signage work well too.
- Flyers and handouts - Having something in hand, with a QR code or some other enticing call to action, is still powerful.
- Sales team - Sometimes the old ways still work. Cold calling, or follow-up marketing through the phone can still reap rewards. Using a good sales script can boost your chances for a win.
To learn more about marketing and sales, and how you can propel your business's growth to the next level, read more in our blogs below:
Want some great free templates to help you kickstart your marketing or sales?
There is no industry or market in the world where you can operate in isolation. If you’re going into business, you need to know who your competition is and what they’re doing. This way, you can find a point of difference, and you can see how they do what they do, and do it better.
Why is it important to understand your competition?
If a company has been around for some time, it must be doing something right. If you can emulate that and do a little better, you too can be in business for a long time.
Understanding your competition, not just when you start but on an ongoing level, is important for staying in business and staying profitable.
Who are their key target audiences? Did you want to try and steal customers from them, or is there a niche you can slot into where you can establish yourself?
Decide if you’re going to tackle your competition head-on in the same market space, or if you can slot in a different space.
The end game is to stand out and stand above your competition, and the only way to do that is to understand them.
- Do some market research using some free tools out there
- Monitor their socials, subscribe to their newsletters
- Document any patterns in marketing or sales
- Research any customer feedback and reviews for their products and services
Download your free copy of our competitor analysis template now.
5 ways to stay ahead of your competition
Being in business is a marathon, not a sprint. You want to be in front, it won't always happen, but you can change things up to get back out there. Here are some tips on doing this.
1. Provide great customer service
People remember how you made them feel. If you can go above and beyond when helping out your customers, they’ll tell their friends and networks all about you.
If your customer service and post-sales service is better and more personable than your competition, these people will be more likely to spend time and money with you. You will leave them with a better customer experience.
2. Be innovative
Don’t be afraid to change it up. Switch what you do and how you market your business if it means staying ahead of the competition. Assess new trends to see if they suit you. Look how quickly people jumped on board the Pokemon Go craze, and set up Poke Stops outside their businesses.
3. Make sure your prices are competitive
This doesn't mean they have to be cheaper. You don’t want to undercut the prices of your competitors if it means losing money and going out of business.
Competitive pricing can mean being a bit more expensive, if you’re offering greater value. Show the fact that your products are locally sourced or locally made, rather than imported, and you can still grab a good market share, even if your products are a bit pricier.
4. Understand what your customers care about
If you don’t know your customers, you’ll lose them. Do they want after-sales care, or do they want loyalty discounts? There is no point in offering buy-one-get-one-free if the products you’re selling only require one item at a time.
Would your customers prefer real help and education over fancy giveaways and price matching? Are your customers after one salesperson they can talk to repeatedly over the years they’re with you? Or do they just want quick, efficient service which doesn't waste their time?
5. Find your niche
While it may seem counter-intuitive to try and market yourself to fewer people, think of it as marketing to a more passionate customer base. The more niched you can get, the less competition there is in your space. You can become the expert in your field, and the first business people think of when they need what you’re selling.
A bonus of niching is the customer retention rate is high. If the competition is low in your niche, who else will they switch to?
Common Problems & How To Overcome Them
With all the twists and turns of starting a business in 2022, and the specialised questions and queries, there are certain problems that will be common to everyone, especially in this post-COVID climate.
How to take your business online?
During lockdown, online business boomed. If you wanted to survive, or compete, you needed an online presence and the ability to deliver, or click & collect.
This behaviour of online shopping has continued even now that shops are back open for business. If you want to be a serious player in the market, you need your business to be online as well.
Learn in-depth on how to take your business online on our blog, with a quick overview below:
- A domain name - Register a domain name that is close to your business name as possible so it is easy to find.
- A website - Easy to say, tricky to implement. There are some good companies out there that can allow beginners to build a simple website. Or you can go the next level with Shopify or Wordpress. To get more professional, you can hire a web developer to help you customise your website better. Your budget will, of course, dictate your website complexity.
- Be mobile ready - Your website must look good on mobile devices. Not only is mobile web use now more dominant than desktop computer web use, Google rates how well your website works on mobile devices when it comes to their search results rankings.
- Understand SEO - This is how people find you organically on search engines. You need to know what people are searching for, what keywords they’re using, and what their intent is. You can optimise your website so it's easy to navigate for both users as well as Google to understand who your content is for.
- Create good content - Don’t just put your website up and let it sit there. You need to create content that people want to read and share. You want content that helps users find answers to their queries, or show them the value of your products and services.
- Connect on social media - This is where your customers live. Have a conversation with your audience, help them, and point them the places that can solve their problems. By this we mean a relevant blog or landing page on your website
How to manage working from home?
Moving forward, workplaces are embracing the hybrid model of work, with some days working from home, and some working in the office. Plus, if a staff member does catch COVID and needs to isolate for a week, then they too may be working from home for part of their isolation. Managing this mixed way of working is vital for your business’s success in 2022.
So, how do you manage a hybrid working model well?
You need a clearly defined set of expectations. What work needs to be done while working from home, what the levels of communication and availability are as well.
Just because someone is working from home does not mean they are out of sight and out of mind. Keep them updated on any policy changes, any news about the business. Keep them included as much as possible.
Find a way to track progress and work, but don’t be overbearing. You want to monitor work so you know they are not suffering by working at home, but you don’t want to be micromanaging.
Listen to your staff as well. If you want them back in the office, and they’re struggling, find out why. You would rather have the best results from your staff than force them to work in places they don’t feel comfortable.
How to deal with supply chain problems?
The past 2 years may have interrupted and impacted your business, including your supply chain. What can you do to overcome this?
- Check your supply chain - Do an audit of your supply chain. How can you cope if one is reduced? Can you cover the gap, or strengthen a potential weak link in the chain?
- Diversify your suppliers - This idea can help soften the blow if one supplier is knocked out with sick staff. You can easily alternate to a different supplier to keep up stock levels.
- Investigate alternative manufacturing - Can you produce your product differently if you need to? Can it be done more efficiently?
- Substitute products - Can you substitute a product while the supply chain is interrupted? If it makes a huge difference to what you are selling, you can explain the temporary change to users.
- Monitor your stock levels - Do you order more stock now to cover any break in the supply chain? Will it stay fresh enough for longer? Can you afford to buy more now as insurance against potential future supply chain issues?
How to be a more sustainable business in 2022?
Sustainability is a growing topic of concern and growing consideration when it comes to business. You need to be aware of your environmental footprint, your emissions and so much more. This awareness of sustainability not only helps the environment, but it can help with your marketing and sales, by alerting customers to the impact (or non-impact) you're having on the world.
You can look at your supply chain to see how sustainable and environmentally friendly it is. Look into your work practices to see your consumption and waste. Are they sustainable, are you recycling and reusing what you can?
If you're looking for investors to help with your business, what are their sustainability policies like? Do they match yours? Can you be inspired by theirs?
Consider your idea and how sustainable it is. Think of ways to make it even more so.
Want to read more? Click one of the links below to see how you can better prepare yourself for the common challenges of business.
- Your guide to overcoming challenges in business
- How to avoid legal mistakes many business owners make
- Navigating challenging times in business with COVID-19
Starting a business in 2022 is the unconventional career pathway many people are now considering. With side hustles started, jobs lost or changed, working conditions modified, and many people starting to rethink their passions and purpose in life since COVID, entrepreneurship has started to become the new normal.
Having worked with thousands of small to medium business owners over the past 12 years as Australia's leading training and coaching provider for businesses, we personally know the challenges and roadblocks many face. We understand how difficult the journey can be, and how lonely it can get.
That's why we're here to help.
While starting and growing a successful business might seem daunting now, with our help, you'll get there in no time.
Read through this blog again and see what your best next step is.
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