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5 mistakes small businesses will make in 2011 and how to avoid them

January 7 2011 by Peter Czapp

All this week on twitter, we’ve been debating the mistakes for small businesses to avoid in 2011. Here are the top 5.

Mistake No.1: Keep doing the same old things

The world has changed in the last 12 months….. has your business?

How to avoid it: Take ½ day out of the office with your mentor. Stop & think. What do you need to change? There is grant funding available for strategic planning such as this – get in touch for more details 

Mistake No.2: Allow costs to creep up in line with turnover

If you do this, your profit won’t increase. You’ll be working harder for the same return. Pointless!

How to avoid it: Set budgets for each cost within your business and measure the actual spend monthly. Using the budgeting tool in Xero will help you do this – don’t forget to review your Profit & Loss report monthly!

Mistake No.3: Attempt to increase sales without a plan of action

Everyone is looking to grow. But do you have a written plan that shows you what you need to do?

How to avoid it: Create a 1-page plan with specific sales actions for the next 3 months. This will get you started… Click here for Wow’s guide to creating a winning business plan. 

Mistake No.4: Waste time doing things that aren’t important

It’s easy to be busy. But at the end of the day, have you spent your time doing the things that make the biggest difference?

How to avoid it: Work out what is most important for your business to achieve in 2011. Write it down… then create a to-do list each day and make sure there is something on there that helps you achieve your No.1 objective. Do that first!

For 21 great tips to get more of the important stuff done, read Eat That Frog by Brian Tracy

Mistake No.5: Miss opportunities right underneath your noses

So many businesses look into the distance for opportunities, that they forget their existing clients and contacts

How to avoid it: Have a plan to make the most of your existing clients, including generating referrals, cross-selling & up-selling. Click here and read tips 54-62 of this article for some practical ideas to get you started

What mistakes will you be avoiding this year? What is your advice for small businesses?

Join in the debate here with @thewowcompany on twitter

For your free copy of Wow’s Cross Selling Matrix, e-mail

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