Many of us have spent this year concerned over the health of our businesses or those in Alameda. And while it’s easy to assume you know the indicators of a healthy business–a good balance sheet–it’s not the only thing you should be looking at.
In today’s world a quick decision from a leader can radically affect your business overnight. It’s important to know the early indicators of business peril.
Think of these things as your business’ “canary in the coal mine.”
6 Signs Your Business Is Healthy
Before you see any issues in the balance sheet, know that if your business doesn’t have these things, you could be headed for trouble:
- Referrals. While it’s never easy to get people to refer you, even when they love you, a healthy business harnesses the power of the referral. It makes it easy for happy customers to bring in more happy customers.
- Reviews. Just like referrals, reviews are the signature of a healthy, well-loved business. But they don’t happen automatically. A healthy business asks for them, makes it easy to give them, and repurposes them in their marketing collateral.
- Promotes from within and trains accordingly. A healthy business promotes from within. It has clear pathways to leadership or additional challenges (if an elevated job title isn’t available). Even if the business isn’t large enough to provide promotions, it should recognize employees who are committed to the business, doing a great job, and want additional responsibilities and training.
- Looks for needs. If your business moves in another direction, opens a new market, or branches out, you may not be able to promote from within. A healthy business is clear about what each employee’s strengths are. Good business leadership will recognize when it needs to obtain something from outside. Then it will line up an additional hire, vendor, or partner.
- Builds loyalty outside of sales. Loyalty is not owned by the sales department. Loyalty is built by customer service and marketing. A healthy company looks for ways to keep customers engaged and feeling like they are part of the brand. It creates enjoyable experiences for customers at each touchpoint whether they are calling to complain, buy, or simply spend time on social media.
- Remains agile. This one is certainly a lesson learned in 2020. A healthy business must be ready to align its offerings and services with those of their loyal customers and the larger market. Small businesses may not have had a lot of operating capital when the pandemic hit. Yet they had something large businesses often lack. They had the ability to move quickly and that helped a lot of them stay in the black.
Is your business healthy outside of the balance sheet? Go through this list and ask yourself how many of these things are exhibited by your business. If you’re missing a few, you may want to see how quickly you can add them. After all, they are good indicators of business health and provide a strong foundation for success.