This summer has been our busiest on record. Fact! And from speaking to other SME’s it seems to be a trend. The general consensus is that 2013 and 2014 were more difficult than 2015, and whilst global economic uncertainty is still played out through the media, there does appear to be plenty of cash about locally for investment and development.
So why is it that many small businesses seem to be flourishing in the current climate? Having asked a few contacts, there are a few key activities that are being adopted that are making the difference.
- Working in collaboration: We have been working with others on a number of different projects this year and it has really helped to increase our work volume, and from collaboration we have gained access to some additional pieces of work and new contacts for the future. Building up our networks can be one of the easiest ways of gaining new business but is a method that not all businesses try.
- Lowering of fees: One consultant advised that he dropped his day rate by 15% and has seen a huge increase in contract offers. He went from having one ad-hoc piece of work to 3 full time contracts being put his way. His day rate is still well in excess of £600 a day but instead of earning less than four-figures a week he invoiced out a five-figure sum at the end of both July and August.
- Planning ahead: It may seem obvious but some businesses just don’t have the capacity to react to customer demand. Instead of taking the traditional summer holiday, some micro/small businesses took breaks before the summer or have booked them for later in the year. We don’t have our time off until November and have made sure our diary and marketing are coordinated to manage workload. It is true that we all need a break, but we can plan our breaks to meet demand and pencil in additional shorter periods of work-escapism to survive longer contracts. An afternoon in the park or the spa can be a great refresher, plus using the weekends to rest instead of working is a real must.
If you are not feeling the money at the moment, it may be worth trying one or all of these tips as they seem to be working for many others. We are experts in coaching and mentoring so can always give you some advice over coffee if you need it! And as long as we keep doing these things, hopefully our summer success will continue through autumn, winter and well into 2016.