Where do you Fall on the Progression of a Business?

Were you able to step away from the office for a work-free, worry-free spring break vacation this year? If you find yourself and your business stuck in the trenches, so entangled in the day-to-day operations that you can’t take a few weeks or even a few days off, it’s time to focus on the progression of your business (and your progression as a business owner) so it someday soon can work without you!

Last month, I attended the ActionCOACH Business Excellence Forum, where ActionCOACH’s Founder, Chairman and President, Brad Sugars, spoke on the progression of a business and business owner. He identified three key phases that I would like to share with you, including symptoms and milestones you need to fix and achieve in order to move towards great success.

The definition of a business in the ActionCOACH world is ‘a commercial, profitable enterprise that works without you’ – the ‘you’ being the owner of the business. By identifying the phase you and your business are currently in, you can learn the action items you need to work to systematize and grow your business so that it runs itself. Then, you can work ON your business rather than IN your business and obtain the results that you want out of your business.

1. Your business is in the RED phase when your key focus is on WORK:

Here are a few signs your business is in the red:

  • You and your team continually make mistakes and do the wrong things.
  • You struggle to manage your own time, let alone manage others.
  • There is currently no difference between “business” and “busyness.”
  • The activities you are working on today won’t translate to sales until six months.
  • Unpredictable cash, sales, and profit.

Here are a few items to focus on when you’re in this stage:

  • Understand that sales is a numbers game. Here’s the secret formula: your wanted results = activities + education.
  • Test and measure your sales and marketing initiatives to know what’s working and what isn’t.
  • Once you’ve found what’s not working in your business, take MASSIVE action to move your business forward.
  • Learn the difference between profit and cash.

2. Your business is in the YELLOW phase when your key focus is on LEVERAGE:

Here are a few signs your business is in the yellow:

  • You’ve mastered the milestones in the red phase.
  • You are fat and happy with the current state of business.
  • You need to set BIG, CHALLENGING goals.
  • The person you are today can’t make your goals happen, but the person you WILL become can achieve them.
  • You are focused on building your team (which will also build your business).
  • There may be some growing pains or tension in your business at this phase, but tension between departments is needed to grow.

Here are a few items to focus on when you’re in this stage:

  • Focus on education – you can’t earn more if you don’t learn more.
  • Ask yourself what you need to give up in order to “go up,” to have more time or talent to focus on your goals.  
  • Work on better understanding the business cycle (owner – team – customer – business – owner).

3. Your business is in the Green zone when your key focus is on ACCOUNTABILITY:

            Here are a few signs your business is in the green:

  • You’ve mastered the milestones in the red and yellow phases.
  • Your team should predominantly be running the business.
  • You’re managing your team through processes.
  • You have KPI’s set for each team member and department.

Here are a few items to focus on when you’re in this stage:

  • Are there any other tasks/functions you can delegate to your team so your business can work without you?
  • Stop dragging people to “winning” – if they are not on board to adopt change.
  • Set higher, loftier and more-challenging goals. Stretch yourself and your business to reach maximum potential.

Building a profitable business that works without its owner has been the goal of ActionCOACH since its inception. Want to learn more about the progression of business, and how to take your specific business to the green phase? Contact us today to host our Six Steps to Massive Results seminar at your business to align your key management team or to bring value to your business owner clients. Learn more here.

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