From the creative to the technical, there are multiple aspects of a business that need to be addressed constantly. Here are five smart investments you should make to help your startup achieve and maintain success.
1. Good Website and Website Design
Depending on your product and business model, consider a web design consultant as you develop your business. For many of your clients, your website is the first encounter they will have with your company. In order to make a good first impression, your website must:
- Be functional and user friendly. While your website may not be the primary way you attract customers or bring in revenue, keep in mind that it may be the only way some customers will experience your company.
- Clearly communicate your vision and the services you provide. Customers and potential customers must be able to understand what you’re selling within just a few seconds from the point they open your site.
2. Business Coaching and Mentoring
Consider the services of a business coach or mentor to guide the startup process. Coaching and mentoring has helped many businesses develop more efficiently. You can hire an independent professional coach, use a firm or consult an online platform to help you define your brand and satisfy your customers. Here are some benefits to business coaching and mentoring:
- Other than the fact that a coach wants you to succeed, he is completely objective and will tell you what you need to hear, such as basic changes that need to be made to your company structure or marketing campaign. He can see your company from the views of the customer, employee and owner.
- Coaching can help achieve balance between fulfilling company goals and meeting the personal needs of employees.
- Mentoring can help increase morale and cultivate a better relationship between your organization and its employees, which results in higher productivity, lower employee turnover and overall quality of your company.
3. Professional Development
It is never too early to think about the professional development of your staff. A good way to motivate employees to stay at a company is to encourage their professional development. Research relevant conferences and courses and promote incentives such as tuition reimbursement or a merit-based reward. In addition to increased motivation, other benefits of investing in professional development include:
- Employees cultivate skills from which customers can benefit.
- Employees nurture leadership skills and teach others within the company. Employees’ value to the company increases, and they view their contributions as more meaningful.
4. Balanced Team
Establishing your place in the market may require your company to be louder and more outgoing than the competition, or it may require you to be more technical and creative than you initially expected.
To give your startup more balance and help it differentiate itself from the competition, do not underestimate the power and value of having diverse personalities on your team. If you happen to be the loud and sociable personality within your company, be sure to invest in creatives and introverts who may have great follow-through, problem solving skills and sensitivity to customer needs.
It seems like common sense to establish good business relationships early. This applies especially to your funding process, but investing in good suppliers and service providers is critical to the longevity of your business. Your suppliers and service providers ultimately influence the quality of the products and services you offer. Here are some things to consider as you look for good business partners:
- Does the potential business partner’s philosophy about quality match yours?
- Can they offer a competitive rate without compromising quality?
- Have you looked into their history to determine their ability and stability?
These five, long-term investments will help to achieve the aspect of quality within your business by building and maintaining strong relationships and clear communication with your customers, employees and business associates. Carefully considering each of them can help your company thrive rather than become a statistic.
Photo credit: teamaltman.com
Bio: Robert Cordray is a former business consultant/entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience. You can find someone with experience to help you and your business at noomii.com. He is currently residing in the southern California area, and continues to write about ways for companies to be more successful. If he’s not reading, writing, or reading more, he’s most likely with his beautiful wife and three children.