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The 6 things every business needs in order to survive and grow!

by Martin D. & Sahil M. | DYEH Podcast

Quick question: What does a parent need to provide their child in order to help them survive and thrive?

Most people would start with the basics, such as food, water, shelter, etc.

And they would be correct.

What I’ve found interesting is that there are many parallels between running a business and raising a child. Meaning that there are certain business essentials that you need to implement if you want to guarantee growth and success.

And today, I’m going to reveal all six so that you can do an audit of your own business and start implementing them ASAP.

To make it easier to remember, I’ve turned them into an acronym called PASCAL.

As Socrates once said, “There is no learning without remembering.”

notebook checklist business

Business Essential #1: Purpose (P)

This may sound a little blunt, but does your business have a legitimate reason for its existence?

This question isn’t as easy to answer as you may think.

If the purpose of your business is simply to provide you with an income, that’s ok. We love the hustle. But you’ll soon realize a fundamental truth that every successful entrepreneur stumbles upon: money alone is not a sustainable purpose.

You have to have something bigger and more meaningful.

But meaningful doesn’t mean complicated. As an example, let’s say that you sell marketing services.

There are thousands of marketing agencies out there. However, there aren’t many that guarantee results.

If your purpose becomes to “help small businesses achieve 2x growth in 90 days, guaranteed”, that would be a worthwhile purpose.

Your purpose is your north star. It will not only help steer your ship, but it will also help you make decisions with absolute clarity and certainty. 

The purpose of the DYEH podcast is to share the stories of successful hustlers and entrepreneurs so that they will inspire you to start your own business and live life on your own terms.

Everything we do is to help push that mission forward. And anything that distracts us from this mission takes a back seat.

It’s why our episodes aren’t filled with ads and sponsor segments (at least, not as of 2023). This doesn’t mean we wouldn’t love making extra cash off sponsors or ads, but we aren’t stressed about chasing it as that is not our primary purpose.

Business Essential #2: A home (A)

Every business needs a home. For physical businesses, this would be the place you either rent via lease or build for yourself.

For us, our primary home is our website. Our secondary home would be Spotify, and our third home would be our social media channels such as Twitter and Instagram.

Your primary home needs to be an asset that your business owns. It’s where your customers can come and receive their product or service. This may seem obvious, but the trick is diversity.

I recommend having at least two homes.

For physical businesses, this could mean opening up a second location, having a franchise, or having a website to go along with your current location.

If you’re a digital-based business, then a website is a must. But what about an app to go along with it? Or if you’re growing worldwide, then maybe an office in a few different countries would make total sense.

Business Essential #3: Systems (S)

When your business is small and in the “start-up” phase, you can get by doing everything yourself. But as the work picks up and you have to start adding more moving parts to your machine, having systems becomes essential.

What exactly are systems? They are strategic frameworks that underpin the smooth operation and growth of any successful organization. Systems establish order, promote consistency, and enhance productivity, enabling businesses to streamline processes, maximize efficiency, and ultimately achieve long-term success.

Systems can be basic (such as a simple checklist) or advanced – such as a fully automated workflow backed by if/then logic statements or even A.I.

But there’s no need to get that complicated just yet. Listed below is a list of essential systems that every small business should have ready to go. Feel free to ignore those that don’t apply to your business just yet. I just want to make sure this list is thorough:

  • Accounting and Financial Management
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
  • Inventory and Supply Chain Management
  • Human Resources & Management
  • Project Management & Task Tracking
  • Marketing and Communication
  • IT and Data Security System
  • Workflow and Common Processes
  • Customer Support and Helpdesk
  • Analytics and Reporting

Many of these systems are available for free if you know the right type of software to use.

But don’t worry, we won’t send you on an endless goose chase on Google trying to find these tools. That’s just not our style.

So what we’ve done is carefully curate a list of 50 free tools that you can start using today to help you grow your business and dial in your systems to ensure everything runs like a well-oiled machine! Just enter your information below for instant access. This list has taken us years to put together, as we use these very tools ourselves. So what are you waiting for?

Jump in below!

Business Essential #4: Cash flow (C)

You would think that this would be obvious, but many entrepreneurs still fail to understand its importance.

Now, if you’re being funded by an angel investor or VC, then you’re in a whole different bracket. Your cash flow is likely secured for a year or two.

For the rest of us, we need to ensure that we have cash coming in on a consistent basis. This means sales. Which means you either need to learn to sell or hire someone who is good at selling.

You also need to make sure that your burn rate is lower than the amount of cash you’re bringing in. Don’t be afraid to get scrappy and “into the dirt” in order to break even, or even in the green.

Trust me, it’s worth it. One of the reasons my business partner and I were able to sell our physical business post-pandemic is because we hustled our asses off and ensured that the gym was always cash flow positive. Even if it meant we took a hit on our own salaries.

I literally went one full year without pay and without any drop in work ethic or enthusiasm.

I knew that a business with negative cash flow wouldn’t stay “a business” for very long.

Business Essential #5: Audience (A)

Let me ask you a quick question: If you released a new product or service tomorrow, who would you announce it to?

More importantly, would anyone actually care?

If you honestly have to answer both questions with “no one,” then it means you lack an audience.

Every business needs to have an audience and own it as an asset. The easiest way to accomplish this is with an email list.

Social media followers are also your audience, but the problem is that you do not own them. You simply “rent” them from the service while your account is active.

But we all know what happens if you make one wrong move: you can get banned or cancelled.

This can literally kill your business overnight!

In case it wasn’t obvious, let me reiterate: DO NOT rely on your social media followers as your only source of an audience.

Do whatever it takes to build an email list, and do it as quickly as possible.

Business Essential #6: Leads (L)

Many people think that the previous essential I mentioned (audience) is the same as having leads.

This couldn’t be further from the truth. So let’s take a moment to define the two.

An audience is a group of people who have shown interest in your business, message, or story. They are curious but not committed.

A lead on the other hand, is someone who has shown direct interest or desire in acquiring your product or service.

The only reason they aren’t a customer yet, is likely due to a few last-minute obstacles that you need to help them get over.

These last minute obstacles are quite common. In fact, I’d bet they are almost universal, regardless of industry. Here’s a brief list:

  • Price (“I’m not sure I can afford this”)
  • Risk Reversal (“What if it doesn’t work for me?”)
  • Decision Making (“I don’t have the authority to make the purchase”)
  • Trust (they like the offer, but are not sure you will actually deliver)
  • Urgency (there’s no real reason or rush to make the decision today)

This is why it’s so important to practice your responses to the most common obstacles (also known as objections) that a lead will throw at you.

Just remember this: The only thing standing between a lead and their money is a list of obstacles.

It’s like the bouncer at the entrance of a VIP venue. You get past him, and you’re in.

Of course, you should do this ethically and be truthful. Don’t make the mistake of promising what you cannot deliver.

I hope you find these essentials helpful. Once again, you can simply remember the world PASCAL if you need to jog your memory or re-listen to the episode.

We wish you all the best. Stay strong and keep up the hustle!

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