If you’re running a small business, then the chance are that your life is a little bit more exciting – and a little bit more stressful, than the average one. But this needn’t necessarily be the case. With the help of a few simple practices, it’s possible (often with the help of a good field marketing agency) to eliminate some of the big sources of stress for manufacturers and retailers alike.
Plan for the worst
If you’re running a small business, then the prospect of a key product going horribly wrong is likely to be something that keeps you up at night. This is especially so if you’ve yet to plan for such a contingency.
A product recall can inflict considerable harm on a business’s reputation. We’ve all heard the horror stories of exploding Samsung phones last year – and the cost of these stories can be measured in the billions of pounds. But the problem isn’t just restricted to larger businesses, it can effect smaller ones, too – no-one, after all, wants to be associated with a product that’s faulty or dangerous.
The best way to mitigate this damage is by planning ahead. That way, when disaster does strike, you’ll already have the mechanisms in place with which to address the problem. Consult with a dedicated product recall company during the good times – they’ve got the experience, expertise and technology necessary to conduct a recall far more quickly and effectively than any non-specialist could hope to.
Take a break
If you’re running a small startup, then the chances are that you’ll be working long hours. There exists a widespread preconception that in order to be successful, you’ll need to commit more than seventy hours every week building and developing your business – and in many cases, we’d commit more if it were possible.
Clearly, this ambition is incompatible with good mental health and happiness. And if you’re under stress, then the chances are that the decisions you make won’t be all that fantastic. The first step toward regaining control of your time is therefore to take a step back and acknowledge that there are limits to your capabilities – and then come to terms with them.
It’s important that you allow yourself time to switch off. Have a few hours each evening where you don’t check your emails or think about the amount of work you’ve got to do the next day. Book some holiday time if things are getting especially fraught – you’ll likely return from your trip refreshed, and able to offer better solutions to the problems facing you and your business.
Of course, if you’re going to be successful, then by definition you’ll want to avoid failure. But it’s also worth considering that one might encounter the occasional setback on the road to success. If you’re unprepared for them, these setbacks might be highly demoralising – after all, you’re competing with firms who rarely advertise the fact that they’ve missed a target, or had a product launch go terribly. It’s worth therefore reflecting on the fact that not everything is going to go your way – so instead of getting stressed about it, try instead to learn from your mistakes and evaluate why they might have occurred. That way you’ll be in a better position to handle the problem next time it rolls around.
Accept a lack of control
One of the perks of being self-employed is that you’re in control of your own income. You decide when you clock in and out; you decide when you get up in the morning; you decide whether or not you deserve a raise.
It might seem paradoxical, then, that so many entrepreneurs seem to lack a sense of control over everything that might affect their business. Of course, it’s impossible for any business to exist in a vacuum – even if you’re the sole proprietor of your firm, you’ll need to rely on other people – whether they be clients, investors, employees and outside parties. You’ll be able to influence these people, but you won’t have total control over the decisions they make. It’s worth coming to terms with this early on in your career – that way you’ll avoid suffering stress later on.
When your business gets sufficiently complicated, you’ll need help to stay on top of things. This help might come in the form of a real-life assistant, but you might equally achieve productivity gains through the use of mechanical automation. Get inventory tracked and sales logged and analysed automatically, and you’ll save yourself a great deal of worry.