Business problems stop you having the successful business you want for yourself, your family and for your employees.
In this blog I help you to diagnose the source of your business problems so that you can focus your time, energy and money on correcting the underlying issues.
What Are The Symptoms Of Business Problems?
The symptoms of the problem are usually very clear - one or more of:
- Few customers
- Low prices
- Losing money
- Unhappy workforce
- Frustrated entrepreneur
Treat The Underlying Cause , Not the Symptom
It is much more effective to diagnose the business problem or the problems that are causing the visible symptoms? While the symptoms are obvious, the cause is often not so obvious.
This is why I love the cover of the third classic FREE report The Final Chapter (affiliate link) by Rich Schefren, the famous Internet marketing guru who takes a strategic approach to solving business problems.
Rich Schefren Formula For Success
According to Rich Schefren, success equals
- Vision +
- Strengths +
- Passions +
- Resources +
- Alliance Partners +
- Powerful Tactics +
- Action Plan
- You need to know where you are going
- You need to be playing to your strengths
- You need to have the passion to push through the difficult times with real commitment
- You need to have the resources - money, equipment and people - to do what you need to do
- You need to recognise that you are stronger working with partners than trying to do it on your own, to help you market and deliver your products and services
- You need to use powerful tactics to deliver your strategy for achieving your vision
- You need to coordinate everything happening with an action plan to make sure that everything that needs to happen does happen.
While it differs from my own prescription for business success (see the Profit Tipping Point) this makes a lot of sense to me and I find that it makes a great diagnosis tool for takiong a fresh look at business problems. I've even used it with a few clients.
Rich Schefren doesn't just give you the formula for business success but he gives you a business problem symptom sorter which is a very useful problem diagnostic tool.
Working Back From Symptom To Underlying Business Problem Using The Schefren System
If any of these success factors are missing, then business becomes more difficult because the missing element causes business problems.
The genius of the diagram is that it allows you to work back from the symptom to the problem so that you can see what is potentially missing.
Take a look at these business problems
- Confusion - you're not sure where the business is going or what you should be doing - this indicates that the key problem is that Vision is missing from your business. When you clarify your vision, the confusion will disappear.
- Anxiety - you are finding it very stressful working in your business and you are not getting the enjoyment you should - disappointing results and the clear evidence of an undiagnosed business problem will cause stress but it will be made worse if you are not playing to your strengths. Doing things that you are not good at causes difficulties and problems while things are easy when you work in your areas of strength.
- Unmotivated - you have a direction but the problem is, it doesn't stir you into action - this is because passion is missing. You have chosen a business or a vision which you thought would make you money but it doesn't excite you. If you can find the passion, for what the business does for you, your family or your customers, you will feel re-energised.
- Frustration - things are not happening as fast as you want or as well as you want. This can often be traced back to the problem that you and the business lack resources - perhaps it's money or you are trying to use unsuitable equipment or to get the wrong people who don't have the skills and aptitudes necessary to do the work.
- Limited Success - things are OK but the problem is you never seem to get to take-off speed and build the business you know you could. This is probably because you haven't established strong relationships with people and businesses who can help you while also gaining from your success.
- Sluggish Results - again things are OK but performance should be better. You have the partners in place but still things aren't happening because the underlying business problem is that you lack powerful tactics. You have opportunities to sell and upsell but you fail to take them.
- False Starts - things start off well but then problems start happening and you lose control. In this situation, you will find that better action plans, showing what will be done, when and by whom will lead to more concerted effort and longer lasting success.
Using The Business Problem Diagnosis
I like this problem analysis because it can work back from the symptom when so many business health checks dive straight into what is happening in the business.
Did you find yourself thinking that you suffer from more than one symptom of business problems?
That's what I have found when I have used these ideas with businesses that are not performing as well as their owners would like and often the entrepreneur will agree that things can be improved.
You can get a copy of the Final Chapter and a few other resources from Rich Schefren if you sign up at the Profit Vault (affiliate link). They are written to help Internet entrepreneurs and to promote an Internet coaching program called the Business Growth System.
Even if you do little with the Internet, his reports are well worth reading because in many ways Internet businesses are just a more specialised version of nomal small businesses and many of the problems are the same.
Solving these problems are important elements of my own Eight Pillars of Business Prosperity coaching model.
What Do You Think About Business Problems?
Has this analysis of business problems given you new insights and "Aha" moments?
If so I encourage you to leave a comment to share your thoughts and experiences.
Other Rich Schefren Resources
Rich made his stellar reputation with his Business Growth System coaching program for more details, please see my very detailed Business Growth System review on another blog of mine.