Managing A Business

manage business
From day-to-day operations to preparing for the future!

Once you have established your business and have an active presence in the marketplace, ensuring that you are properly managing the everyday functions of your business is absolutely essential. Taking careful note of all revenue and expenses can help your business to continue to run smoothly. You will want to make sure you maintain proper bookkeeping and have a basic knowledge of business finances.

Ask yourself the following questions related to your business management practices:

  • How do you plan on managing the day-to-day operations of your business?
  • Will you need to hire employees? If so, when and how will you build your team?
  • What bookkeeping system will you use?
  • What are the financial needs of your business?
  • Are there any regulations or compliance issues you need to consider?
  • How will you handle human resources and legality issues?

Ensuring that you have a marketing and sales plan in development is also very important in managing a business. Your marketing plan will ultimately turn your strategy from your business plan into action! At Northland SBDC, we can provide assistance in developing your marketing plan at no-cost to you.

Marketing
Employees
Legal/Taxes
Emergencies
Customers
Succession
Establishing a Marketing Plan

Describe the actions you’ll take to persuade potential customers to buy your products or services through the following modules:

Target Market
Who is most interested in your product or service? How will you go about reaching this audience? Pay attention to market size, demographics, traits, and trends of the audience in question.

Competitive Advantage
What sets your product or service apart from your competitors?

Goals
What are your ultimate goals marketing and sales wise? Describe these goals in detail.

Sales Plan
How do you plan on selling your product or service to your target market? Explain in detail the methods (i.e. retail, wholesale, etc.) that you plan to use.

Action Plan
What channels do you anticipate using and what pricing strategies will be best for your business? Describe in detail how you plan to achieve your goals through your action plan. 

Budget
What are the total costs of your marketing plan? Try to be as accurate as possible.

marketing plan
Hire & Manage Employees

Employee vs Independent Contractor
Understanding the difference between employees and independent contractors can impact your bottom line. An employee receives benefits and regular wages, is managed by the employer, and has taxes withheld from their paychecks. Where an independent contractor typically is paid by the project, chooses when and where to work, and handles their own taxes.

Labor Laws
Understanding federal and state labor laws protect you and your employees’ rights through proper implementation of labor laws.

Employee Benefits

Benefits such as vacation and personal leave, retirement plans, and medical, disability and life insurance can play a significant role in your expenses and hiring and maintaining employees at your business.

Wages & Taxes
Create a plan for paying your employees; scheduled pay periods, develop compensation plans for holidays and paid time off, calculate and withhold income taxes. This may become overwhelming and you may wish to look into a payroll service to help manage your business’s payroll.

employees 1
Prepare for Emergencies

If disaster strikes, ensure your business has a plan of action. Better yet, ensure your business also has plans in motion to prevent any such disasters from occurring in the first place.

Emergency Preparedness
Identify risks associated with your area and update your plan of action accordingly

Financial Assistance After A Disaster

A small disaster, flood, or fire can turn a business upside down if it is not ready for it. Having good insurance coverage can help, and when there is a large scale disaster there may be other resources to reach out to in Minnesota and through FEMA.

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Customer Relations

Communicate
Rather than just telling your customers about your business, have legitimate conversations with them. Find out what they need and how your business can help them! 

Go Above and Beyond
Continue to raise the bar for your business. In simpler terms, under promise and over deliver to impress your customers and exceed their expectations.

Request Feedback
Show your customers you value their thoughts related to your business by requesting feedback and implementing changes for the better. Always respond promptly to feedback, whether it’s positive or negative — prompt response shows a care for your business and your customer base. 

Connect
Use social media outlets and other online tools to connect with your customers. Your social media pages and website should showcase professionalism and personality to the best of your ability! 

Show Appreciation
Consider showing your appreciation to loyal customers. Whether that’s by providing them a promotional discount code or gifting them free swag items, it’s a simple yet effective way to say thank you to customers while keeping your business top-of-mind.

customers
Succession/Exit Planning

There may come a time when you decide to close or sell your business, transfer ownership, or need to file bankruptcy. For more information and guidance, sign up for a one-on-one consultation with a Northland SBDC professional business consultant in your area.

Managing A Business

Downloads & Tools

succession
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