As a business owner, you are always faced with decisions. You have vendor issues, new suppliers to vet, marketing decisions that need to be made, customer service issues that require solutions, and a myriad of other things that require your attention on a daily basis. And at times, it can be downright overwhelming. Many business owners fall into the trap of "wait and see" when it comes to a lot of their decisions. They pick the most important decisions of the day, focus on those, and put off the rest until tomorrow ... or maybe next week ... or even next quarter. And while this method can help you focus on the high-level decisions that will help you scale your business faster, there are a few scenarios that should never be left to the "wait and see" method. Here are the top three issues business owners should tackle immediately.
A sales slump.
A good entrepreneur knows that monitoring their KPI's on a regular basis is a good idea. Keeping on top of your numbers will not only allow you to spot problems early on, but it gives you the opportunity to act on things quickly and correct your course if need be. When you begin to see your sales numbers taking a dip, don't leave the decision for another date. Address the problem head-on and come up with a course of action on how to get your numbers back up as quickly as possible. This could mean improving your customer service experience, improving your online buying journey, updating your pricing, increasing ad spend, or adjusting your current marketing campaigns. Whatever the solution, it shouldn't wait.
If you have an issue with an employee, you can't afford to wait and see if it straightens itself out on its own. If there is a problem, address it head-on at the source. Ignoring an issue, or leaving it for a future date, will not only hurt your business in the short term, but it could have a lasting effect on your company culture, other team members, and your bottom line -- for months, if not years. Have a tough conversation today to minimize the damage down the road.
Speaking of tough conversations, collections are another area where many business owners like to put off the inevitable for fear of having to make hard decisions. But allowing a customer to push their payment back 30, 60, 90 or more days can really hurt your bottom line and your ability to pay your own employees and vendors. Compounding the issue, if you put off sending a client to collections and allow them to purchase from you in the interim, you could end up losing even more money in the long run if they choose to delay or deny payment altogether.
There are many scenarios where the "wait and see" method is a great way to free up your time and energy to focus on the things that really matter with your business. But when it comes to sales and marketing, staffing, or collection issues, you're better off addressing the issue head-on, as soon as you realize there's a problem.