There is no denying the fact that many businesses are collapsing in Nigeria and indeed all over the world today due to a lack of awareness of what it takes to salvage the situation. This has even led to serious health conditions as many businessmen have become hypertensive and their health condition has defied medical solutions. This is because as long as the survival of their businesses is threatened, their own survival will continue to be threatened as well. That’s why I’m revisiting this book this week as a textual solution. I wish you a pleasant reading.
This text titled 101 Survival Tips for Your Business, with the subheading Practical Tips to Help Your Business Survive and Prosper, is written by Andrew Griffiths, a professional marketing consultant, as well as director of an Australian company called The Marketing Professionals. Griffiths is an accomplished trainer and respectable public speaker. He specializes in problem solving for companies that urgently need professional advice on marketing and customer related issues.
Throughout his career, Griffiths has owned and operated a number of businesses, including a commercial diving operation, a travel company, an outdoor advertising company, and a tourism publication. He has equally worked as a scuba instructor and commercial diver, door-to-door encyclopedia salesman, gold prospector, international sales manager and gardener.
According to this author, running a business is difficult and demanding even at the best of times. Griffiths says the trick to survival is to avoid the common pitfalls all commercial operators face on the road. He ensures that the 101 practical survival tips offered in this text will guide you to successfully navigate through these dangers and help your business reach its full potential. This expert says that each of these survival tips is based on his many years of experience and good advice from successful businesses around the world.
Griffiths advises you to choose and apply a new tip each week or use this book for inspiration and guidance when starting a new business. In this book, there are tips to help you build better relationships with your suppliers, your staff, and your customers, as well as financial, legal, marketing, and personal survival advice. All of these tips are designed to highlight common problems and give you a clear course of action that will increase your chances of business survival. Regarding the structure, this text is segmented into 12 basic sections of 101 tips, plus an additional section containing 20 tips. Section one is called The Future of Small Business.
In Griffiths’ words here, “Small businesses form the backbone of many economies. As the population grows around the world, so does the number of small businesses being started. Millions of people around the world continue to choose for running their own business instead of working for larger organizations. As a result, there is an incredible knowledge and skill base tied to running these small businesses.”
He adds that there is a tremendous amount of experience and specialized knowledge that thrives in this economic sector, the value of which is often underestimated. Griffiths says that experience has shown him that small businesses generally offer better levels of service than their larger counterparts, due, in most cases, to the key personnel involved at the front of the business. However, Griffiths says that the problem most small businesses face is increasing competition from other small businesses, adding that this dilemma is here to stay and even grow.
In section two, titled Survival Tips for Getting Counseling, containing the first four tips, this accomplished speaker discusses the kind of help available, tells you when to seek help, urges you to embrace technology and save money, and tells you that you may be eligible for a grant. According to this author, “Many governments around the world offer incentives for people to run small businesses. These governments realize that small businesses play an important role in their economy…by distributing products and services to the general public.” “. He says these governments are equally aware that small businesses provide jobs for millions of people, and this development makes the economy work well.
Section three of this text is generically labeled Financial Survival Tips and contains tips five through nineteen. Here, Griffiths emphasizes the need for you to have enough money to start your business. When it comes to budgeting, he advises you to plan for the worst, not the best, adding that you should keep your personal and business records separate. Griffiths reiterates the need to use a good accountant, keep a good record early on, and watch out for the third-year boom and fourth-year slump.
In section four containing tips 20 to 27 and entitled Tips for the survival of business relationships, this expert reflects on how to avoid the pitfalls of society; how to build a relationship with your suppliers; how to build a relationship with his professional advisors, etc. Section five of this text is based on staff survival tips and contains tips 28 through 37. In this section, Griffiths emphasizes the need for you to put your staff job description in writing and always check references. He stresses the need for you and your staff to be properly trained; he leads by example so that your team will follow you; communicate effectively with your staff; conduct performance reviews; be aware of security issues and protect your business etc. In section six, based on tips 38-46 and labeled Customer Service Survival Tips, this author says that you need to build a good relationship with your customers and learn to say No. Griffiths further emphasizes that you need to use a simple market research to follow up, adding that you should continually ask your customers if they are happy. He advises that you keep everything you promise and be honest and upright in all your dealings.
Section seven is based on advertising and marketing survival tips, examining tips 47 through 57. Here, the author says that you need to develop your own marketing philosophy; take a course or read a marketing book; take baby steps to market your business; develop a strong corporate image; market your business with a simple plan; never stop trading just because business is booming etc.
Sections eight through eleven are titled, respectively, Internet Survival Tips; Insurance Survival Tips; Legal Survival Tips; and Personal Survival Tips. These four sections contain tips 58 through 93. In these sections, Griffiths emphasizes the need for you to be realistic about the Internet and make sure you market your website. He says you need to budget for the internet as an ongoing expense and watch out for spam. Griffiths advises on the type of insurance you should have, adding that you need to make sure you meet the requirements of your policy. Griffiths offers you a guide on when to use a lawyer and how to choose one. He also offers tips on how you can keep legal costs down. According to this author, as far as personal survival tips go, you should start your business feeling refreshed and healthy.
Griffiths advises him never to give up his hobbies when starting his own business; asks her to keep up his enthusiasm; and learn to manage stress. Section 12, the last basic section is labeled Planning for the Future, Survival Tips and contains tips 94 to 101. In this section, this author says that he needs to know exactly where he’s going and know exactly how he’s going to get there. Griffiths reflects that he should always have a plan for when things go wrong and set up his business so that someone wants to buy it.
As already stated, in addition to these 12 basic sections, there is an additional section containing 20 additional survival tips. Here, Griffiths says among other things that you shouldn’t be afraid of getting paid for what you’re worth; learn to delegate; try to win a prize for your business; constantly strive to improve your business; make your business eco-friendly; and compile your own operations manual.
Stylistically, this text gets a passing grade. For example, the text is written in short blocks reinforced with very simple language and no jargon. Griffiths adds the Survival Tips Action List at the end of each section to spark active participation and practical application from readers. However, the (partially) repetitive areas of the multiplicity of advice contained in the text can still be harmonized to avoid possible conceptual redundancy. In general, this text is a masterpiece. Do you want to achieve lasting success in your business, especially during this period of global economic downturn? If the answer is “Yes”, then you need to get a copy of this book.