Why my business is not growing? If your business is not growing, you probably have two main options. One, change your product. Two, change your market. In the final analysis, it is either one of these that need to be fixed. Consequently, at its most basic level, a successful business is where the product is right for the market. You sell it. They want it.
So why is it so tough to achieve this magical place where you sell the right product, to the right market? There are only two variables, so why is it tough to achieve a match?
The answer is that both these variables are grounded in human behaviour, the biggest variable of them all. What you sell, and what they buy, both depend on feelings. The business owner “feels” he has the right product and the customer only buys when it “feels” right.
So ultimately, at its core, building a successful business, in any industry, depends on understanding feelings. This is where most ventures fail.
Firstly, the Entrepreneur tends to not understand his own feelings because he is mostly under-advised, over confident and typically desperately stubborn. Most business owners are their own worst enemies. They can’t see the wood from the trees and consequently run the business into the ground. Or never get it off the ground. The entrepreneur’s failure to understand his own emotional investment in the business becomes a hurdle to growth.
Secondly, the business owner fails to recognise that his customer also has feelings and, nine times out of ten, has no clue as to what those feelings are. In simple terms, Entrepreneurs don’t understand their customers. They think their customer should go through the exact same reasoning that they did when starting the business and fail to understand that the customer sees things from a completely different angle.
Over the last two weeks, the mighty Samsung has announced that its mobile phone business is struggling, whilst Apple became the first trillion dollar publicly traded company, partly on the back of fewer, but more profitable, mobile phone sales. Why is this? It is because Apple understands feelings where Samsung is obsessed with function. The one acknowledges that business is about people, whilst the other believes that it is about components, and pricing, and gimmicks.
Here is a tell-tale sign that you are missing the “feelings” part of your business: an obsession with price. Whenever your discussions, whether with your staff, partners or customer boils down to “our price must come down”, you know you are treading water. Typically a price discussion underpins a failure to understand the feelings that drive customer actions.
The way to grow a business is to understand the feelings that underpin both product and customer choices. Start there!