Pursuing License Agreements for Inventions: Successfully Securing Royalty Payments for New Products

The information in the subheadings below can help an inventor know how to proceed with obtaining a License Agreement for his invention. It is important however that an inventor first take steps for protecting his invention under a patent pending before offering his invention for licensing. A companion to this article is one titled: “Methods for Licensing Inventions”.

Making a Prototype

When manufacturing/marketing companies are approached with a new product idea by an inventor, they prefer to have a working model or sample-design submitted to them. This is called a “prototype” and an inventor can make the sample himself or if it is a somewhat complicated product, he can have a manufacturing firm or machine shop, sewing factory, etc. put one together for him.

It is better if an inventor is able to produce a prototype on his own if possible because this reduces the chances of early exposure of an invention and will save on the expense of having a prototype made by a manufacturer.

Non-Disclosure Non-Use Agreements

If an inventor has to use an outside source to get a sample (prototype) made, he should have them sign a “Non-Disclosure Non-Use Agreement”, which is an agreement that simply states that upon disclosure of the invention to them, for the purpose of producing a prototype, they agree not to publicly disclose the invention to third parties or to make any further samples of the product for their own use. The inventor has them sign such an agreement so that they do not expose an invention publicly sooner than it is ready to be launched onto the market.

Letterhead and Submission Materials

It is important to look as professional in the efforts to secure a licensee/manufacturer as possible. An inventor needs to have a professional looking letter of request that is sent out to interest companies in seeing a presentation of a product/invention, with a letterhead at the top of it that includes contact information for interested parties.

It is important to put together the best submission materials possible. These type items can include the following:

  • A brochure that describes and highlights an invention
  • a demonstration video
  • a chart that can be pointed to and referred to
  • printed results from any positive test-marketing that has been done

In other words, anything that presents an invention to a reviewing company in the best possible light is a good thing to have with when making a presentation for an invention.

License Agreement Proposal

Most manufacturers that express interest in an invention want the inventor to set their desired terms so that they can make a final consideration before entering into a License Agreement to market an invention. Manufacturers like to see inventors who know what they want out of their invention rather than having an inventor say to them, “Whatever you guys think.” They prefer to have a more detailed proposal placed in front of them so that they can negotiate from that point.

An inventor can find a local attorney to help them compose a License Agreement proposal or they can find one on the internet using a search term such as “sample license agreements,” etc. Once one has a general contract in hand, they can customize it to their liking.

The most likely term/condition that requires some time in negotiating with a licensee is the amount of royalty they will be required to pay on units sold for an invention under a licensing. Royalties paid on inventions can vary but according to some sources, a majority of inventions that are licensed receive a royalty between 2% and 10%.

In Conclusion

These suggestions can help an inventor to generally know how to pursue and prepare a License Agreement but one factor that is also of great importance is an inventor’s ambition. A positive attitude and confidence in pursuing a License Agreement for an invention is a key factor. Inventors who remain confident, ambitious and who don’t give up if they initially fail to interest the companies they first make presentations to, are the ones who succeed in eventually getting their inventions marketed.

Manage Time Wisely While Running a Home Business

Running a business from home can be a difficult task. One primary issue often encountered by owners is time management. How can time be effectively utilized, thus allowing for the most productivity? Knowing several useful tips can provide clarity and assist in simplifying this process. These tips can aid in putting the business owner on a path towards business success.

Prioritize and Organize

Prior to sitting in front of the computer, have a list of goals which need to be accomplished visible at all times. This way it is simple and clear to remain focused on what the initial intent of being on the computer in the first place is. It is easy to get on the computer and decide to do a quick email check, response to a friend or take on some other activity that has been postponed. Distractions can be costly. Know what tasks need to be accomplished, keep the list nearby, and avoid unnecessary surfing of the internet.

 

Perform Like a Factory

Group similar activities together and complete these with efficiency. For example, if a response needs to be provided to someone regarding an email that was received, wait until several emails need a response and do them all at once. Need to run an errand? Get several that need to be completed in the same area and complete them. Performing several tasks at once will put more time back in the day to complete other things.

Hire Help

An assistant may be needed to help process paper work, but perhaps the kids are the ones needing to be entertained. Do some research and find a helper to come in while working for a few hours. It is amazing how much work can get accomplished when undisturbed time is allocated. This can prove to be a winning situation for everyone involved.

Use Technology

Using technology can provide an ideal way to put flexibility in a schedule. If there is wireless internet at home, one can work in the kitchen, bedroom, backyard, front porch or another location that provides peace and comfort. The kids can perform something they enjoy doing, while work tasks ares being completed. Also, many local coffee shops such as Starbucks provide wireless internet access for free.

Time management requires commitment. By taking the necessary steps for proper time management preparation one can increase daily business production. Doing so will allow greater processing methods and enable one to emerge as a well respected, positive role model in the business arena.

Business Plan Basics: How to Craft Your Pitch, Executive Summary and So Much More

There are 5 basic things to understand before your create a business plan: your purpose, your voice, your pitch, your executive summary and your magic.

Your Business Plan’s Purpose

Most people write business plans when they need money. While it’s necessary to show investors that you understand your business and have a plan, the reality is that most money people see it as a necessary evil.

The best reason to write a plan is to answer the key business questions – who, what, when, where, why and how – for your business.

Setting the Tone for Your Business Plan

While the business might be the brainchild of one, two or more, the business plan should be written by one voice. Bring the team together to brainstorm. Throw concepts out and vote them down. But the plan itself should be written by the president or CEO to ensure that it shows focus and clarity.

Your Elevator Pitch

Too often businesses create a lengthy plan then take highlights to create their pitch. The result is a disjointed pitch that is neither effective nor easy to understand. When writing a business plan, you need to define your objectives and create your pitch then expand on that information to create a compelling plan.

What does this mean? Let’s say you have a business idea to develop an application that aggregates data from multiple social networking sites and communicate in multiple virtual venues from a single portal.

Sample pitch: “Over 100 million people use MySpace, over 12 million use Twitter, more than 9 million use Facebook. There are more than 125 major social networking sites with the number of minors reaching into the thousands. Our portal enables users to access and manage identities on all of these from a single location. CPI advertising rates range from ¼ of a cent to ½ of a cent per impression. You do the math.”

Writing the Executive Summary for Your Business Plan

This is your chance to shine. Keep it to one, no more than two pages. Tell them that you get the business of business. What’s that you say? You buy something for $1, sell it for $2 because it fills a void or does it better/cheaper/faster than your “me too” competitor.

Highlight the problem and make your pitch showing why you are the solution of choice; no more, no less. Don’t wax philosophical. Don’t espouse the value of your technology. And don’t quote a ridiculous number of white papers and research studies that mean absolutely nothing. Connect, tease and entice. Make them want you.

Putting Magic into Your Business Plan

In truth the whole package needs a little magic. Not smoke and mirrors but the kind of magic that makes people see your idea as clearly as you do. The kind of magic that resonates and connects. The kind that gets folks thinking. The kind that makes them beg you to tell them more.

That’s it: purpose, voice, pitch, summary and magic. Get those right and the investors will find you.

Business Etiquette of Russian Market: Learn the Foreign Market Business Culture Before Starting a Business

Starting a business in a foreign market involves many factors that may influence its success. Russian Business Etiquette is one of them if the target country is Russia.

With over 140 million customers, Russia is one of the top largest and vast export markets in the world. Starting a business in this country, of course, requires learning the rules of its business etiquette.

The official language of Russian business is Russian. Though English is popular in the country, it is not widely spoken.

Starting a Business in the Russian Market

The U.S. Commercial Service recommends conducting a thorough foreign market research before attempting to start a business in Russia. Business partners are to be chosen very carefully. Travel to the country and regular communication are of a great importance for establishing and maintaining successful business relations.

It is very beneficial to establish positive relations with national, regional, or local authorities.

Advertising, market promotion and regular visits should be an integral part of the Russian market entry strategy.

Doing Business in Russia

A company must be officially registered in Russia in order to legally conduct business.

A reasonable combination of price and quality is welcomed by the Russian customers. A foreign exporter should be ready to adequately compete with inexpensive Russian, European and third-country goods. Strong advertising and promotion campaigns can be of assistance.

Success in the Russian market demands after-sales service, customer support and training. Establishing personal relationship with business partners is crucially important for conducting business in Russia.

The largest business centers of the country are Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Business Etiquette of the Russian Market

  • Clothing is usually formal – both men and women wear business suites for official occasions. Dresses and skirts for women, as well as high-hilled shoes, are very common. Russian businessmen pay much attention to clothing as it is considered to be a reflection of one’s success and prosperity.
  • Business meetings should be appointed beforehand. They are usually accompanied by refreshments like tea, coffee, and water.
  • Business cards are common and important. The best option would be a two-language card (English/Russian).
  • Promotional materials should be in Russian. Make sure the translation is accurate and high-quality.
  • Gifts are accepted, but not required or expected. However, they are a good way to establish positive personal relations with business partners.

General Information

  • A visa received at a Russian Embassy or Consulate is required to enter the country.
  • The official currency of the Russian market is ruble.
  • Credit cards are accepted by most hotels and shops in the large cities, but it’s better to always have cash, especially if visiting a small city.
  • There are 11 time zones across the country, and business hours are from 9 AM to 6 PM.
  • Shopping can be done from 10 AM to 8 PM. Many large stores are open 24/7.

Creating a Business Card for Freelancers: What Freelancers should look for in their Calling Cards

Business cards are the ultimate signature for any person who works. Here is how freelancers, in particular, can create that unique business card to market themselves.

Designing a business card for a freelancer can be exciting and hard work. It certainly requires a lot of imaginative thought and creative development in order for the freelancer and his or her services to be effectively marketed towards clients. This is different from corporations that have an established brand and logo, as freelancers, especially new ones, have to create the awareness and presence of their services first.

The Freelancer’s Name

The freelancer’s name is essentially the brand name of his or her ‘company,’ which represents him or her. Some freelancers may not choose to do this and set up their own enterprise. But generally, playing upon the freelancer’s name will help get this person out in the market. The name can be turned into a logo or emblem and his or her services can be derived from hir or her name itself. Thus, it is important to have his or her name printed clearly on the business card.

The Colour Scheme

Generally this is a personal choice and the main reason for freelancers choosing their line of career is to be able to express what is uniquely theirs. Freelancers are not bonded with corporations that dictate corporate colours or faux-pas and are therefore free to choose their colour schemes, which may possibly represent their own favourite colours. Of course, some colours look more professional than others, while some may paint the wrong picture of the service.

For example, baby pink and quirky purple may not go down well with a freelance financial auditor but would define a female fashion designer’s service. Similarly, blue and black may suit a general business writer but not a graphic designer’s portfolio. So, it up to the business card designer to gently guide the freelancer towards colours that would represent his or her industry accurately.

The Design Itself

Freelancers need to stand out of the crowd and there is a good thing that there are so many possible designs in the market that will allow them to do that.

Firstly, at best, do not clutter the card with too many graphics or too many fonts. This can be confusing and have an adverse effect on the client. Also, make full use of double-sided cards to reduce the clutter on the card.

Secondly, try to send an interesting message across to the clients. The card can be designed as a ‘teaser,’ enticing clients to contact the freelancer in the future.

Thirdly, design the card horizontally, not vertically, as clients often keep business cards in a horizontal box and flip through them the same way. They will often miss names that are printed vertically across the narrow-top of the card rather than printed broadly across.

The printing material is also important here, but that largely depends on the freelancer’s budget, as many are starting out as new players in the market. However, the better the overall presentation of the card, the higher the chance the card will not be tossed into the dustbin.

Content on the Card

Generally, the freelancer’s name, description (of service) and contact details would be sufficient to make up the content of the card. These three items need to be printed in clear font and in the right colours on the card.

However, freelancers may be anxious to make the best impressions through their calling card, thus, may want to squeeze in as much information as possible on the card. Though this is informative, the card will look cluttered and possibly tacky and desperate for attention.

Try the minimalist approach: providing the potential client with a glimpse of the available services offered by this person. It is possible to make a short and simple list on the back of the card. But if he or she is adamant on including a long list of services and their details, suggest a small marketing brochure to complement the card.

Lastly, do a spell-check before the final print and ask the freelancer for the final approval. Embarrassing spelling errors will just be detrimental to the future of his or her career.

Signing Off

Business cards can be left everywhere, with anyone and is the ultimate signature of the freelancer’s services. It has to look unique, fresh and professional to garner keen interest in the market. Therefore, it is important to look at the details of the card from the freelancer’s name to the overall message and presentation of the card for best results.

Three Aspects of Business Excellence: Best Practice Business Strategies

The best companies in the world all use the best methods available to them to increase their top line and bottom line. These methods are described here.

The three elements of a business that define profitability are how much is sold, the features that the product possesses, and the efficiency with which it is produced. An easily remembered hook is “How Fast, How Good and How Cheap”. For each of these three elements there is a Business Excellence tool. “How Fast” is maximized using a Lean Manufacturing method, “How Good” is enhanced using a Quality Program, and “How Cheap” is optimized using Rational Management Processes.

The three aspects of Business Excellence are not independent. There are overlaps between each of them, not least because the exponents of each have tried to widen the scope of their methods.

Business Excellence: Lean Manufacturing

There are several tools available to increase output and reduce cycle times. They all rely on reducing inventory levels in the work area. Although the phrase “Lean Manufacturing” has a specific meaning in some quarters, it is used here to mean any method that reduces cycle time by keeping inventory levels low. Examples of lean manufacturing methods include Kanban, Theory of Constraints, and Just in Time (JIT).

Business Excellence: Quality Tools

The best companies strive continuously for quality improvements, and have a focused program to this effect. There are many of these programs available, such as TQM, Kaizen, and Six Sigma.

TQM – Total Quality Management – educates the entire workforce (hence “Total”) on the benefits of quality (reduced waste, lower cycle time, lower costs, etc.), where quality is defined by the customers, both internal to the company as well as external to it.

Kaizen means “Improvement” and tries to improve every aspect of the business, from management to tool set-up, to production practices. It tries to introduce a human element to improvement, and often focuses on removing difficult work, since human error is the most difficult to eliminate.

Six Sigma aims to reduce defect levels down to around 3 parts per million. The focus is to recruit the best people and get them to work on the hardest problems. It attempts to characterise a process output by finding out, using sound statistics, what inputs affect the output. It was first used by Motorola, but is now in widespread use.

Business Excellence: Rational Processes

There is another aspect to Business Excellence that is better suited to deal with management issues. For example, how to decide which engineer should be assigned as project leader on a new machine installation. The rational thought process can be formalized to a large extent, and one of the methods in common use is the Kepner-Tregoe Rational Thinking management program.

It has five main components:

  1. Situation Appraisal: This is what every good manager does regularly, set out in standard form
  2. Problem Analysis: Formal method to solve any problem, product, personnel, etc
  3. Decision Analysis: Standard method to remove emotion and inconsistency from decisions
  4. Potential Problem / Opportunity Analysis: Indentify possible problems, and take action accordingly
  5. Incident Mapping: Summarise a complex incident and identify the true root cause

Summary of Business Excellence Tools

There are many methods to make a product or a service faster, better and cheaper. Tools such as Theory of Constraints, Six Sigma, and Kepner-Tregoe, are used together and are closely linked. Proficiency at using these Business Excellence tools leads to more product being made, and made with higher quality, more cheaply.

Business Etiquette of Spanish Market: Business Culture and Recommended Foreign Market Entry Strategies

The high income Spanish market is one of the most promising and rapidly developing markets of the European Union.

Its business etiquette is a vital issue to study before attempting the foreign market entry.

The major language used in Spanish business circles is Spanish. Though many businessmen speak English, the country’s business culture prescribes using Spanish in correspondence and at personal meetings.

Foreign Market Entry

Government incentives for foreign investors are a favorable feature of the Spanish market.

Madrid and Barcelona are the largest business centers of the Spanish market. Therefore, the U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service recommends foreign market entry to be conducted by means of an agent or distributor, or via establishing a local office in one of the two major cities.

Both price and quality are equally important for Spanish business. Other significant issues are customer service, credit terms, and marketing assistance in promoting the goods or services of a foreign exporter.

Highly popular in Spanish business is using a credit for purchasing goods, and banks compete for offering the coverage.

Doing Business in Spain

Though Spanish government welcomes foreign investors, the bureaucracy accompanying the foreign market entry is significant. Since usually Spaniards cannot be found in a hurry, it may take some time and effort to get certain results by the deadline.

Respect to the country’s language, history and traditions is highly valued by the hospitable citizens. As for communication, it is normal for Spaniards to speak fast and interrupt each other.

Business Etiquette

The business culture of the Spanish market is more formal than that of the US. However, there is nothing better for entering the market than a personal meeting. Phone calls, e-mails or other correspondence will not provide such a good effect as personal face-to-face contact. Personal relations is what Spanish business values most of all.

  • Formal clothing is preferred by Spanish businessmen. Usually it is a business suite for women and a suite with a tie for men. In Spain dressing is to reflect business and social status.
  • Business cards are very common, and are expected at personal meetings. They should be either in Spanish, or in two languages – English and Spanish.
  • A handshake is always appropriate at the beginning and at the end of a meeting along with basic courtesy titles: Senor for a man, Senora or Senorita for a woman.
  • Appointments are recommended.
  • Business lunch usually starts at 2 PM, and may last up to 2 hours.
  • Dinner starts at 9:30 PM, and may last till midnight.

General Information

  • Usual business hours are from 9 AM to 6 PM.
  • Banks are open on weekdays, from 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM, and sometimes on Saturday mornings.
  • Shopping can be done in department stores from 10 AM to 8 PM, Monday through Saturday. Smaller stores and offices are usually closed between 2 and 4 PM.The official currency is Euro.
  • Visa is not needed for the US citizens to be in Spain for 90 days.

Operating Business Plans to Win in the Downturn: Smart Businesses that Plan Will Thrive During the Recession

Difficult economic times call for extraordinary insight and foresight. Smart business planning can be the key to succeeding, even survival, during the economic downturn.

The purpose of an operating business plan is to guide a company or not-for-profit organization in its day-to-day operations. The hard thinking and the tough decisions that go into a good solid business plan are more important in today’s challenging economic environment than ever before.

An operating business plan transforms carefully thought-out goals and objectives, usually from a previously developed strategic plan, into performance targets and the action plans to accomplish them. The very process of developing a good operating plan can in itself help a company sharpen its direction and focus.

Developed properly, it is an operations road map for the coming year that provides a common set of guidelines to be shared among the company’s leadership and decision makers. (It should be noted, a different kind of business plan is required when approaching lenders and investors for additional capital. It is more detailed and must answer a wider range of questions.)

Pulling together either type of business plan requires a substantial amount of organization and discipline — and hard work. The eight steps below, when developed, become the sections of an annual operating business plan:

  1. Overview

This is a summary, or abstract, of the completed operating plan for the year. It is among the first sections started and always the last one completed.

  1. Mission and Values

Describe what is different, and what will be different, about the company’s operating environment during the term of the business plan, usually one year.

This section should also include a revisit to the question, “what business are we really in?” If that sounds odd, numerous traditional telecommunications companies have disappeared over the past few decades because they failed to realize they were in the communications business, thinking wrongly they were just in the telephone business.

  1. Industry Scan/Risk Analysis

This is a critical section. Here a company must analyze trends affecting the company’s industry and markets, and the key opportunities and risks these present to the company, and what the company must do about them. This means changes to previous business activities, such as what the company will continue to do, what it will do differently, and what it will start doing and stop doing.

  1. Products and Services

This section is a discussion of how the company earns revenue, i.e. its products and services, and how these are delivered and why.

There should also be a comparison of the company’s products and services with competing products and services.

  1. Assets to Profits

Do an inventory of the physical assets such as buildings, inventories, leases, capital equipment, new capital and other resources needed to convert the company’s products and services into revenue.

The focus is on how to make the most efficient use of these assets in order to generate revenues and subsequently, profits.

  1. Operating Priorities

Describe operating priorities for the coming year, changes from past years, and why. What opportunities will present themselves in the coming months and how should the company capitalize on these.

This section should also discuss how operations can be affected by threats, trends, business cycles and other issues, and how will the company deal with them, i.e., capitalize on some, adjust to others, neutralize the rest.

  1. Marketing Plan

Include a summary of the marketing plan, focusing on marketing priorities, and how the company is differentiating itself, and its products and services, from competitors and competing products.

Describe the markets for these, and discuss the marketing strategies and tactical approaches the company is taking/will take.

Include also any issues that may affect the company’s ability to achieve sales and revenue targets, and what is being done about them.

  1. Financial Plan

This should contain a candid assessment of the company’s financial outlook for the coming year. The section is essentially a summary of the budget for the coming year, including capital requirements, revenues and expenses, and earnings.

It should also focus on financial issues related to the coming year’s operating priorities, and include clear financial performance measurements, by month, quarter and for the year.

Coping with Change in a Business Environment: How to Help your Employees Deal with Workplace Change

Change is becoming a constant in the business world and employees are frequently expected to cope with more and more change.

Change is a necessary part of business and is becoming ever more frequent. Yet for some employees, change can mean stress. If you look at the statistics, people not adjusting is a common cause of large scale projects not realising their full potential. So how can you, as a business manager, help your staff cope with change better?

Manage the Volume

Some people cope better with change than others, but most people become less flexible with change the more they have to cope with. If possible, try to limit the amount of change in one area to an acceptable limit.

Understand How People React

Most people do not like change; they like things to pretty much remain the same, knowing what they have to do and how to do it. If these factors change there is uncertainity – uncertainity about their ability to do the job, even if there is a job!

Some change can be positive, such as a promotion into a new role, but even that has a period of uncertainty where the person has adjustments to make. It may mean working with different people, a different manager, more or different types of responsibilities, and different expectations.

Some change is negative, such as loosing a job or loss of responsibility. Most changes have both positive and negative aspects.

Tell People What is Happening

People want to know what is going on. If they don’t know they will grab any threads of information they hear and often make up the rest. Provide people with as much information and detail as you can and make yourself available to talk it through. Sometimes people have to hear things in different ways to fully understand and appreciate the implications.

Sometimes management assumes that the reason for the change is very clear and obvious to the entire organisation. This isn’t always the case and for some the reasons may seem very unclear. Take the time to give people background details and reasons for the change. If corporate objectives have changed, help your staff understand this and what it means to them.

What Does the Future look Like?

To cope with change people need to understand what it means to them. While it might be great for the organisation as a whole, it might be difficult for some people to see any benefits in their particular area, and in some cases there may not be any (for example, their department may no longer exist).

The Negative Implications

In many changes, there are some people who do not get the benefits (such as people demoted or made redundant). Be sympathetic to their situation and offer them any assistance you can.

It Takes Time and Patience

It does take time for people to fully assimilate the effects of a change. Don’t expect them to be positive immediately and give them time and opportunities to air their concerns in a safe environment, without any implications. Acknowledge their concerns but help them move forward into the new world of the change.

Be a Role Model

Your staff will look to you as how to behave and react to the change. Your positive attitude will rub off on your staff and they will follow your behaviour in making the necessary adjustments.

Understanding that change isn’t easy for people is the first step to helping them cope. Give them plenty of information and opportunities to discuss the impact. Change needs to be communicated, both as the implications to the company, but also to the individuals. It will take time for people to adjust and fully appreciate what is now expected of them. Be patient but also be a role model for positive reactions to change.

Define Effective Vision and Business Strategies: Strategic Thinking for Strategic Objectives and Business Planning

An effective business vision and set of business strategies requires good strategic analysis and strategic thinking and is based on business strengths and opportunity.

The vision is the long term goal of the business and should be ambitious without being a complete fantasy. That goal should be broad and forward thinking and unite the business with a common purpose. The business strategies are selected based on existing capabilities and strengths and that are the means to achieve that goal. Those business strategies will move the business forward to the goal either in one step or in multiple steps over time.

Vision

To be effective the vision must be simple and succinct, it must be something that the people within the business can identify with and it must have a tangible impact within the business. For example Ford Motor Company’s vision is: “to become the world’s leading consumer company for automotive products and services”. Or Bill Gates of Microsoft had the vision of “Windows on every desktop”.

Business Growth Strategy

The business strategies should be based on comprehensive and insightful analysis of the business strengths and the market opportunity available. SWOT Analysis in particular is useful to do that. Business growth strategy is typically focused in one of three sales areas:

  • New – introduction of a completely new product or product design or the latest and greatest version for example cars, electronics, mobile phones…
  • Differentiation – establishing a brand that will typically command a higher price for example designer clothes and accessories, premium brand cars…
  • Price – low cost or commodity pricing to reach a mass market for example budget airlines…

Other Business Strategies

Importantly, the business strategies should also focus on other business strategies for example:

  • Financial – profit margin improvement
  • Customer – service improvement or added value services
  • Internal – efficiency or effectiveness improvement
  • Learning and Development – training programme or skill development capability leading towards new innovations

Characteristics

The selected business strategies should share characteristics that provide clarity so that each one is:

  1. Clear and specific
  2. Measurable in some way such as increased sales, reduced cycle time, increased throughput…
  3. Achievable within the next six to twenty-four months
  4. Results-oriented and so expected to provide some tangible benefit to the business

For example “Increase sales” should become something like “Increase sales to local small manufacturing businesses by 25% over the next 12 months”.

Step Two Completed

This completes step two of six in Strategies to Improve Your Small Business. The key to selecting successful business strategies lies in a clear appreciation of business strengths and an insightful understanding of the market opportunity based on good strategic analysis and thinking. Above and beyond that the business strategies need to move towards the longer term goal and this business planning needs to be clearly stated and communicated.