Updated: Nov 21
You wake up every morning, your mind buzzing with the uncertainties of running a small business in today's shaky landscape.
The ups and downs, stiff competition, and daunting decisions all feel like a tightrope walk. You dream of a business that stands unshakeable amid these challenges, a vision of success and stability - but it seems out of reach.
The good news? The stress stops here. Your search is over.
Here, we begin to build an unshakeable business.
The secret is in the foundation. Imagine a future where you wake up confident, knowing your business is not just surviving but thriving against all odds.
To thrive means getting rid of the headache and returning to the joy of your business. Let's turn your story into one of unwavering success.
Ready to take a few steps back and shore up the basics?
Grab your heart and let's get to it.
Strategy 1: Cultivate an Unshakeable Growth Mindset
The wall. Everywhere you turn, it’s there, looming up in front of you, blocking your way. I’m just going to say it - this is good!
Why? Because, here, you have to decide to either grow or give up.
The concept of ‘growth” isn’t just a buzzword; it's the engine driving your business forward. Think about it – what goes through your mind when faced with setbacks? Do you see them as dead-ends or opportunities to learn?
A growth mindset is about embracing challenges, not shying away from them. It's the difference between thinking, "This is too hard," and asking, "What can I learn from this”?
Hubspot, a software and education platform to help businesses grow better every day, tells us that… “a growth mindset is the belief that you can improve upon your abilities and talents with effort and time. Entrepreneurs with a growth mindset think they can better themselves in areas they struggle in by learning.”
Take Sarah's bakery, for instance. When a new competitor emerged, she used it as a catalyst to innovate her menu instead of letting it keep her up at night, tossing and turning.
That's the spirit of resilience and adaptability in action. Building an unshakeable business.
So, how do you keep this growth mindset when you look at the ebb and flow of dollars and cents? Keep reading.
Strategy 2: Focus on Unshakeable Financial Stability
Now, let’s talk money. A shaky financial foundation is like building a house on sand – risky, right?
Picture this: Instead of that anxious wrinkle across your forehead all day or being right on the edge of snapping at someone whenever they come to you with a new issue, you live in your sweet spot.
Whistling. Smiling. A clear head ready to listen when someone needs an answer.
How do you become that person? A simple map.
The map is a clear 1-year mission with three specific revenue goals and a great big “Why” for doing everything you do. This becomes your guiding light in the face of those ups and downs. The foundation you stand on.
helps you to know what to tackle and what not to tackle right now
tells you where you’re going
tells you why
But it’s not just about hitting numbers; it’s about knowing your ‘why’ so you can keep going when those numbers fluctuate. Financial resilience is born here.
Imagine a local gym targeting a 20% increase in membership. Their 'why'? “Because everyone deserves to feel strong and confident in their own body.”
“…inevitably in business, there will be challenges that will deter you... it is so important to drill down past the surface “why” and uncover what will truly drive you to overcome the obstacles. This is what will keep you on the path.”
Ok, Captain, to build something unshakeable, you must embrace your leadership. That’s up next.
Strategy 3: Develop Unshakeable Leadership Excellence
Leadership is the compass guiding your ship. You’re the compass. Where this ship heads depends on you.
Unshakeable leadership strives for excellence. Greatness - the very best.
Now, take a breath here.
Excellence isn’t perfection - it’s having the courage to step up and act from a foundation of your strengths, skills, and passions.
The courage to live in alignment with your values every single day. To create opportunities for yourself, your team, and your business.
It’s using your influence to empower people to work toward a higher vision.
Your team is watching you, looking up to you to lead them.
Remember the 3 revenue goals we talked about and the “Big Why” that make up your Actionable Mission?
Here’s another “3” to stand on. What three qualities must every team member be going for to heroically pursue your mission?
It could be decisiveness, empathy, and strategic thinking.
Maybe it’s creativity, willingness to grow, and professionalism.
As a leader, it starts with you. You mirror these qualities to your team, inspiring them to come alongside you.
Imagine the power in your business if everyone was pulling with the same oars in the same direction.
Remember the gym? The owner's modelling of respect, good health habits, and innovation led his team to grow the same qualities. They successfully created more classes, engaging community events, and fun inspirational contests that steered them toward their three revenue goals for the year.
We all know this kind of teamwork doesn’t just happen. But it can happen if you build it into your foundation. Like so…
Strategy 4: Create an Unshakeably Vibrant Workplace
You know it. You can feel it. Every place of business has a vibe.
It’s that welcoming, peaceful feeling you get that keeps you coming back. Or it’s the lack of caring and respect feeling that helps you decide never to darken their door again.
Your team creates the vibe in your workplace in the way they greet people, answer the phone, offer to help, go the extra mile.
You have your 3 revenue goals with your Big Why, and you have your 3 Key Qualities needed to accomplish that mission.
Here’s another “3”: Create 3 tasks that every team member can do daily to move your business closer to those goals.
Think playbook, but not just as a document – as a living, breathing guide that gives purpose, validation, and a reason for every team member to do their best.
Peggy Shell tells us that, just as we’re encouraged these days to create the life we want to live, we can also, ‘Create The Place We Want To Work”. She encourages business leaders to develop their own Culture Playbook. Check it out for the steps.
Ever walked into a café where everyone seems genuinely happy to be there? That’s no accident. It results from a positive, inclusive atmosphere where each person knows their part in brewing that perfect cup of coffee.
That perfect cup of java will feel like home to the people who love what you do. So, how do you keep them coming back? Stay with me.
Strategy 5: Elevate Customer Engagement and an Unshakeable Satisfaction
Customers are the lifeblood of your business. Your “Big Why” tells you who you want to serve and what you believe about improving their lives.
So, how are you going to find out if it’s working? Knowing that you’re scratching their itch is crucial to keeping your business alive.
It’s kind of like falling in love. You enjoy the person that makes your heart flutter and want to do all you can to keep them close to you. If you don’t realize what it takes to put a smile on their face, the relationship isn’t going anywhere.
Engaging and satisfying them isn’t just about selling; it’s about connecting and understanding.
Here are some great suggestions:
Give them a voice. Provide ways they can offer advice to help your products wow them even more.
Be there for them. If they have a concern, need to return something, or have a question, make it easy for them to talk to you.
Do fun things like run contests, offer samples (everyone loves a taste test) or offer points that get them free stuff.
Stay engaged on Social Media. Let them know what’s happening, your great idea for them, or when your next sale starts.
Speaking of sales, give them great deals, and they’ll keep on coming back.
“The goal of a company is to have customer service that is not just the best but legendary.”
Sam Walton, Business Magnate, Walmart Founder
Meeting needs can be a fun and creative way to live in your business, but what happens when the hard times hit? Let’s talk about that next…
Strategy 6: Champion Innovation and Unshakeable Adaptability
Change is constant, even when dancing with your customer’s needs.
Imagine, as we discussed at the beginning of this post, that you built your business on a foundation of sand. When a storm hits, rain runs under your house and the sand shifts.
Panic ensues as you try to keep it from falling over.
You zap your energy with little left to do what you do best - grow your business.
Shore up the house with a bedrock foundation. Be ready for it.
This goes beyond inventing new products or services; it's about cultivating a culture that thrives on change and anticipates every challenge as an opportunity.
Build an unshakeable foundation that anticipates hard times. Here are some suggestions:
Accept change. Encourage a mindset where all ideas are welcomed and considered, no matter how unconventional.
Implement practices like regular brainstorming sessions and cross-departmental collaborations to spark creativity. Your team is your eyes and your ears.
Celebrate both successes and failures – each is a stepping stone towards innovation. It's about making your team feel valued and heard, fostering a sense of ownership and commitment to the business's success.
Anticipate market shifts and stay ahead of new technologies whenever possible. Think outside the box.
For instance, a local bookstore expanding into digital content creation exemplifies adaptability – they’re not just reacting to the digital era; they're embracing it.
Encourage creative thinking, be proactive in the face of change, and leverage modern tools to stay ahead. Up next: one vital tool you shouldn’t be living without.
Strategy 7: Build an Unshakeable Online Presence
We are in a digital age. There’s no disputing that. What does that mean for you?
You need to go where your customers hang out.
Your online presence is your global storefront, your platform for storytelling.
Social media, content marketing, and SEO are not just play things - they’re like bridges connecting you to your people - and even potential investors.
So tell your brand's story. Showcase your products or services. Show how you care and know the struggle your customers face. Have fun with it.
For example, imagine a local artisan using Instagram to showcase their craft. They don't just post pictures.
They tell stories about the inspiration behind each piece.
They share customer testimonials.
They offer glimpses into their creative process.
They respond to comments, share relevant information, and answer questions.
They create content that speaks to the needs and interests of their audience.
Result? A community that believes in and supports who you are.
Want to be the answer to their prayers? Integrate SEO strategies in your content using the keywords that your customers use. Be the business that shows up when they ask Google to help them find what you offer.
Kristin McCormick, “The 25 Best Ways To Increase Your Online Presence (+Free Tools!)”, says this: “Guys, (most of us) spend eight hours a day doing digital activities. That’s more than half the day. More than most of us sleep…a strong online presence is everything today. And the fact remains that 97% of consumers go online to find and research local businesses.”
Remember, you’re not just running a business. You’re building a legacy.
Rekindle Your Business Passion
We’ve reached the end of our 7 Strategies, but I hope this is the beginning of foundation building. This is your blueprint for building an unshakable business.
Amidst the chaos of invoices and client issues, remember why you started. Embrace that growth mindset, anchor in financial stability, and lead passionately.
Your venture is more than a job; it's a vibrant tapestry woven with dedication and dreams. Take a breath, reignite that initial spark, and step forward with confidence.
Every challenge is a stepping stone towards greatness.
With resilience, innovation, and a touch of creativity, you're not just surviving the market's ups and downs – you're thriving.
Stand tall, entrepreneur. Your journey to success is a beacon for others. You've got this!