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Get creative in business
Being creative in business is often associated with a creative job, be that in corporate aspects of design or innovation. But you can be creative in your business practice regardless of what the business does. Being creative in business can be as simple as creating wealth—and as satisfying as any traditional form of creative outlet.
You can find different ways of creating wealth in a business you own, while being creative at the same time. Creativity can apply to the direction in which you’re planning to take the business, how you're going to make money—it can apply to your clients, products, and the services you provide. It can apply to the input you provide to marketing. A creative business owner can find different ways to grab their clients' attention that perhaps they wouldn't have considered if they were employees working in the business.
Staff retention in a creative business
Creativity can be applied to how you deal with staff incentives and remuneration, how you motivate your staff, how you keep them engaged—all of these elements require a creative input. When I speak to entrepreneurs and business owners, I often find their biggest issues are around staff retention. If you can be creative about how you engage with your staff and how you incentivise them and motivate them, then that leads to greater business success.
In our industry, the successful brokers are the ones that overcome obstacles. As far as a sales cycle goes, business sales are one of the most complex sales cycles, but also one of the most satisfying because you have to think outside the box.
Early on in my career, I had a client with a wholesale manufacturing business. We weren't getting a lot of traction with the traditional advertising methods and I had to start thinking strategically about how to attract buyers.
We sat down and thought about the issue creatively. We reinvigorated the marketing process and delivered the result the client was after. This experience was so successful it prompted me to create my strategic marketing process.
Part of this creative approach involved thinking ‘horizontally’—looking at who has a similar business, either in the same field and different geographic location or with complementary products that could allow a bolt-on opportunity. In addition we would look for vertical integration opportunities up and down the supply chain.
Thinking creatively about your business strategy
How do I make 1 + 1 = 3?
Is there are complementary business that I could buy, where I would not only get the profitability of the business added to my operation, but where that business could add to the profitability of my current operation? Be that through selling my products to the clients of the acquired business and vice versa or through economies of scale, reduced operating costs or the like.
Is there a supplier to my business that would give me greater profitability by taking out the middle man?
These are great questions to ask yourself if you want to creatively increase your profits and make 1 + 1 = 3. On the sell side, these questions form part of the first step in our process to looking outside the box and finding the buyers that see the most value in a business we are divesting.
Want more great ideas on how to take a creative approach to your business? Sign up to our newsletter for regular advice from the country’s best business brokers.
LINK Australia, Managing Director