The UK’s business landscape has admittedly been in turmoil over the past year, as rising costs and difficulties with international trade continued to impact profitability. At the height of the cost-of-living crisis in the summer, three-quarters of small businesses were at risk of failure within weeks.
As a new business, then, it is a difficult market to break equitably. What are some essential strategies and approaches to improve your business’ performance on its upswing into your industry?
Unfortunately, it is often the case that the most important variable in any new business start-up is money. Even if you have a strong business proposal or idea, that is near-guaranteed to penetrate your chosen market and crush competition, you will not get far without the necessary financial backing and investments to shore it up.
This is just as true for new trade businesses as it is for private sector enterprises. Indeed, trade businesses offer the perfect case study for what a business needs to succeed. As a tradesperson, you would need to have access to a variety of reliable tools to ply your trade; without initial investment into a set of Milwaukee drill drivers, a joiner cannot competently meet the needs of a given domestic project.
Ultimately, if you do not put the work into building your business’ infrastructure – and investing properly in its growth – you will not inspire trust in potential clients. This means shrewdly using financial pathways set out for you or seeking investment from the right sources.
Speaking of which, the next-most important part of instituting a new business is networking. In order to stake your claim to a corner of your industry, you need to ingratiate yourself with it – rivals, partners and potential clients alike. You could even use networking to source funding for specific growth goals, via angel investment.
The proper growth of any kind of start-up, whether a practical vocation or the building of a new business model entirely, requires you to reckon with your skill set, and to revise a new set of skills that better serves your business’ overall aims. These skills might be practical and hands-on when it comes to a trade business, or they might reflect the technical nature of a product or service you are attempting to bring to market.
But it is not just your responsibility to build your skills and understanding with regard to your specific business or trade. If you are working with others, whether apprentices or salaried employees, it is vital that you properly cultivate skills and experience in them. This allows you to delegate tasks more effectively, making for an efficient team and an effective working business.
Lastly, flexibility is a key virtue to possess as a business and as an individual business leader. There are many challenges a new business faces on its rise to establishment, and these challenges require quick and nimble responses from yourself and your executive team. The ability to pivot to a different model or market could be the difference between complete success and complete failure.