Leaders the world over including those at this week’s G8 Summit are calling for economic growth, not just budget tightening, in an effort to combat world market instability and speed recovery. But for all the talk in policy circles, this growth will ultimately come from the private sector and especially here in the U.S., from small to medium sized businesses that create many of the jobs and employ many of the workers already in our economy. Here’s a look at the economic growth G8 leaders are calling for and six things you can do to promote growth in your business today.
Leaders Call for Growth
G8 leaders come together on growth agenda. President Barack Obama said recently he sees emerging consensus for an agenda promoting growth among some of the world’s largest economies after a meeting of the G8 Summit. Leaders are, however, still focused on cutting debt to handle the European financial crisis. Associated Press
Job creation is a top priority. An important priority identified by G8 leaders is job creation. There were no immediate specifics on how the various nations might attack the problem, but here in the U.S. support of small business has been a major theme. CNN World
China also calls for growth. The G8 isn’t alone. The world’s second largest economy is also calling for growth after some economic slowdown in April. Premier Wen Jiabao was quoted in state run media stressing priority in this area on Sunday. China has made rapid progress in recent years by embracing limited entrepreneurship. The Washington Post
But are businesses really growing? Two studies suggest small businesses may be following the lead of U.S. consumers by borrowing less and simply working to pay down debt. That may sound great from a fiscal standpoint, but business expert Rieva Lesonsky writes it could also mean no financing for expansion and signal a slowing of economic growth. Grow Smart Biz
Six Things You Can Do
Start by being prepared. Much of what will position your business for future growth starts with you. Warren Rutherford lists an actionable business plan, being more authentic and self-aware, and becoming a knowledge-based manager as key steps in promoting that growth. TweakYourBiz
Get motivated and find inspiration. Blogger Holly Reisem Hanna has mined the archives of her own inspiring site to give us 30 clever tips for finding that motivation and inspiration you’ve been lacking. The Work at Home Woman
Get better at time management. In this free Webinar entrepreneur Allyson Lewis, author of The 7 Minute Solution, shares ideas that will help you work more efficiently and with greater focus, accomplish more while doing less, and avoid distractions and disorientation. Check it out. PitneyBowes
Learn to meet your deadlines. Small business expert Denise O’Berry shares a free ebook including six easy tips to get better at managing projects in your business. The ebook also includes a list of four common problems that could cause your business to fail, and why mastering project management is so critical to small business growth and success. GetApp.com
Treat your customers like human beings. Do we really have to say it? These suggestions from Angel Business Advisors include some pretty common sense things like greeting them by name, asking them about their needs, having a casual talk, and meeting them face to face. Are you doing these things, and can they grow your business? Small Biz Viewpoints
Learn to handle growth once it occurs. Once you’ve achieved growth in your business, it’s important to manage it. Make sure you deliver quality results, but don’t add unnecessarily to your workload, causing standards and service to decline. Don’t be afraid to sacrifice short-term revenue for long-term gains. Marie Forleo
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I think the last article about managing growth is very important. Small business owners have to learn how to deliver the same great product or service to more people in the same amount of time. That is not easy. I also think there is the pitfall of try to utilize too many opportunities at once. That is, a small business can get too successful. A small business can choke on too many opportunities as well as starve from too little. The small business owner than has to choose between opportunities. That is also not easy.
Great article, Tomas. I especially love your point about treating customers like human beings. That’s critically important to sustaining growth in a small business. It takes an awful lot of effort to find a new customer if the last one doesn’t come back.
This article is full of solid practical advise. One of the keys to sustainable growth is to take small proactive steps every day. Growth is a key to every small business person’s future.
“Start by being prepared.” Perhaps the best piece of advice in the mix. 🙂