There are some things in life that are supposed to be really complicated; being a parent, learning how to invest and running your own business. When you look at all of these things nothing could be further from the truth. Parents are taught by their children, investors are taught by their experiences and business owners should be taught by a mentor.

Often when I look at businesses it is clear that the owners have given up trying to improve their lot in life because they think that it is too complicated an issue to generate more activity. They think they need to be Einstein to invent some radical new way of doing business. Let me give you a few real-life examples of how simple it can be to change the direction of a business.

Usually a business has no coherent direction established within its culture. The first thing I seek to have the owner and their team do is spend some time deciding exactly where they want to be in 12 months time. This process must include all of the members of the business, because they will all contribute to getting there. Once this is done the goals are well publicised. One of my clients implemented this as the first step and this alone without any other changes produced a very significant increase in sales.

Another business is a physiotherapy practice. Health professionals tend to think that they should not have to sell their services and skills; people should just discover them. I wrote a simple script for the physiotherapists to tell their patients that it is in their best interests to come back regularly for treatment until the injury they had was completely cured. Up until then they would just say ‘thanks for coming I’ll see you later’. This alone increased their number of patient visits from 190 per week to around 230…a 21% increase in business. Next we discovered that their patients were leaving the practice, walking around the corner and buying strapping tape etc from the local chemist. We stocked the practice with these products. Sales of these have substantially increased the cash flow. This business has grown by some 30% in ten weeks without implementing any of the more impactful strategies that we had identified in their initial analysis.

In another of my mentoring businesses we simply implemented a dress code for their sales team. The most dramatic impact of this came recently when their leading sales person had gone into the field in a dark blue shirt and tie. He spent six hours and had not made a single sale. He walked into a menswear shop, bought a white shirt and red/blue tie, he went to the dry cleaners and had it pressed and then he changed. Within 40 minutes of this change he had sold his entire inventory.

There are many more examples of this sort. The message is clear. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to make money in business. Unfortunately most owners are so close to the coalface that they cannot see the opportunities. That is why an outside mentor who can give advice, encouragement, correction and discipline is the best investment a business owner can make.


Brod Ivory      0407 487 423
Leah Barthel   0427 554 430

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