The week’s meeting of the Boston IEEE Entrepreneur’s Network was lead by TRA360’s own Valentina Rosa and was a gold mine of knowledge and experience in growing a company. The panel included Valentina Rosa the founder and CEO of TRA360, David Kelleher the president of CGI Interactive, Denise Aronson the founder and president of Safety Partners Inc., and Joseph Sanroma, a Consultant with DBA Partners, Inc. Now, nothing can replace being at the meeting itself, so you best join ENET and not make the same mistake twice. But luckily for you, I’ve included 3 great takeaways (Teamwork, Education and Networking) you can start using now to grow your business.
1) Teamwork! Having a startup company doesn’t mean you have to do all the grunt work yourself. In fact, if you are, you are doing the company a disservice. Many of the time consuming aspects of a business can be outsources- from payroll, taxes, prospecting and even marketing. You as the entrepreneur should be doing more managing and less doing. How else can you grow if all your time is spent on busy work? Having a solid, reliable team is critical to scalability. Motivate the team with carrots for performance, and have the best rewards for goals that are a reach. Wouldn’t it be wise to double a commission for a 3x increase? Having cross functional managers can also save money. Ensure that all the pieces are connected to measurable metrics with scalable rewards that increase with performance.
2) Education! No I don’t mean go back to school. I assume that as an entrepreneur your schedule is already supersaturated and learning is best found in the work environment. Today’s business is all about keeping the customers you already have. That means providing a great service and making sure they are satisfied. What better way to make them happy then to make the feel knowledgeable about the work you’re doing? Taking the time to having a “clarity conversation,” as Denise put it, can and will pay off. Everyone likes to feel valued as a team member; If they’re paying the bill, you bet your benjamins that that it’s best to keep the communication going to ensure what they want and how you will provide.
3) Network! So you have customers and they’re happily returning to you for business. Great! But you need growth. If you followed step one, you have now freed up time to go into the channels of communication for your industry. Take step two to the next level and begin offering free content connected to your business, and soon people will see you as a thought leader. If you sell marketing services and your blog is jam packed with great marketing content that people share, you better believe that time and effort is coming back in terms of clients. Do your best to get the greatest value out of the content you create by tossing into the groups of LinkedIn and Facebook, and sharing on Twitter and the likes.
Chances are if your clients are happy, they will be willing to recommend your services to others in the industry. Word of mouth advertising is free and the most effective. Take the time to keep educating your employees on the best practices and educating your customers and networks. All of the pieces to the puzzle work together to grow your clientele in a scalable way, leading to more money in your pocket and happy investors.