When to Grow ?

Since the first of the year, I have been talking to a lot of companies. Their success is across the board.  Some are closing after years of providing a product or service.  Others are busier than they have ever been and are at their manufacturing capacity.  However, the majority of companies I have talked to are somewhere in between.

If a company either stayed even or showed a little increase in revenue over 2008, it is considered a good year. Multiple CEOs have said that they made it through 2009, and that now the goal is to see what they can do this year.

Everyone asks and wonders when the economy will make a solid turn for the better. Government statistics don’t tell the complete story. While there may be good news for one industry, there might be bad news in another sector. Companies are operating with as small of an organization as possible. Employees have multiple responsibilities. Lean Manufacturing has taken on a new meaning.

Most companies know that when the time comes, they are going to have to invest in their future with people and machinery. When the economy makes that turn, they have to be ready to manufacture, produce or provide that product or service their customers will be ordering. The problem seems to be when to pull that trigger and start the investment. The fear is that if it is done too soon, and there is not an actual upturn in the economy, then they might leave themselves in a financial situation that many companies are currently facing.

I have had companies that want to work with us, understand the value we would bring to their organization, yet can’t do it. Some companies just don’t have the money for our service.  Others, may not have it in their budget. Budgets are that tight and cash flow is low. These companies are hesitant to approve an expenditure, even if the end result would be an increase in sales activity. Their fear is “what if it doesn’t work? Where will I be then?” I have had companies tell me that when they get one or two sales on their own, they might have the revenue to use Randolph Sterling.  Money is that tight.

There are, at least, a couple of ways companies can go about growing and preparing for when that upswing happens. In his last blog, Rich talked about the rise in temporary employees the last four months. This is certainly one way for certain companies to grow, yet still have the flexibility to step back, if necessary.

Another option is to find and develop new customers. Relying on current customers, word of mouth and sales reps that don’t have the time to find these new opportunities may not be enough as we move forward. The use of a professional sales organization whose goal is to assist clients in increasing their revenue could be a major step in taking advantage of a rising economy.  Of course, Randolph Sterling is the company that comes to mind.  We tailor our program to fill the need of each individual company and are certainly prepared to assist any company looking for new opportunities.

The question isn’t just when the economy will turn, but whether you will be ready to take full advantage of the new opportunities and challenges that will come with it.

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