Act like a hawk! Defend your business
by Henry Briggs - Senior Partner on 25 January 2012
The next 12 months are likely to be extraordinarily tough for businesses as they compete for market share and survive by winning business from others and I can only urge West Midlands business owners to ‘act like hawks’ over the coming year ahead.
Hawks are birds of prey that vigorously defend their territories, probe for weaknesses and above all, continually keep an eye on what is going on. Company bosses that are looking for success could do worse than model themselves on hawks.
The first priority is for businesses to keep a beady eye on cash flow, creditors and debtors. For most businesses, this is their weak spot. Figures from the payments company BACS revealed that SMEs are owed a total of £33.6bn – a rise of 10% on the previous 12 months and highest figure since records began in September 2007.
Each SME is owed an average of £39,000 and is waiting as long as two months to get paid. The worst payers are larger businesses which put huge pressure on smaller concerns that are unable to get credit from the banks.
At the same time, businesses need also to defend their territory. In a declining or static market, the only way you are going to increase turnover is by taking business off someone else. Like a hawk, you have to defend your businesses’ own territory and make sure that predators don’t move in.
At the same time, you can take advantage of weaker businesses that are lower down the food chain. Weaker companies can provide opportunities for growth and take over.
Finally, businesses need to take advantage of any of the “scraps” the government might throw at it. The Chancellor has announced a number of measures that aim to improve access to finance for SMEs. Every morsel helps – provided businesses take advantage of it.
So how do you keep an eye and defend your business?
If you want further information, use our online form to get in touch.