When businesses go through a phase of high revenue, productivity, and innovation, one must remember this success has not occurred without active planning, creative innovations, accountability, and advancements. Unfortunately too often, these same businesses, experiencing favorable results and the upward curve of revenue, become complacent and begin to incur a decrease in their revenues and return on investment (ROI).

The primary reason for the downward curve of revenue is complacency. These same businesses, who were experiencing an extreme upward curve of revenue and ROI, have forgotten success is a continual investment into research, innovation, accountability, and advancement. When you become lax in your efforts to continue on the upward curve of success, your competition happily steps in to take the role of the leader in the industry.

The key is to RESIST becoming complacent! There are 5 signs a business needs to undergo change:

1. Revenue and Performance of Products/Services are Down (Obvious, right?)

A Business’s product and services are not selling to their optimal potential. The year ends in the red. This is always the first sign of a problem! A thorough analysis of the problem begins by asking:

  • Internal Review
  • How are the product/services producing a result?
  • What’s the impact of the product/services on the consumers’ lives?
  • What are the internal costs?
  • How are products/services being made?
  • What is our process?
  • Are we still advancing with the industry trends and consumer needs?
  • External Review
  • Industry Trends
  • Industry Innovation
  • Consumer Habits, Behaviors, Interests
  • Cost Analysis & Comparison
  • Competitor Review

Although too often complacency has become so intuitive, businesses blame external factors. “It was a bad economic year; Consumers are not spending money like they used to; Consumers are not understanding what we offer (HELLO… Why!?!); Next year we will rebound.” Consequently, the “No change is necessary” mentality, typically results in businesses closing their doors within the next year. DO NOT BECOME PART OF THIS STATISTIC!

2. Productivity is Slowing

A vital sign indicating the business needs to undergo a change is, slowed productivity. The loss of productivity is a result of the lack of accountability, planning, innovation, efficient processes, and/or quality equipment. Remember insufficient technology infrastructures impede the ability to produce products/services efficiently. Time is money!

Secondly, the loss of productivity occurs when the same process is conducted without change. Every business needs to invest in annual tweaks of their process to maintain the competition within their industry and creativity amongst the team. These minor adjustments and refreshed processes result in energy and excitement allowing for success!

3. High Turnover Rates

4. Decreased Personnel Morale

These two signs indicating a business needs to undergo change are directly linked. Both elements focus on a business’s dedication, response, communication, evaluation, and training of their employees. If an employee loses their passion for the business and their mission, it is inevitable businesses will continually experience high turn-over rates. To maintain a high rate of employee satisfaction, businesses need to remember every employee was hired to add value based on a specific quality or knowledge-base. These qualities or skills were identified as a necessity to improve processes, increase product/services performance, and create an impact on the industry. Therefore, continuing to engage employees as a valuable asset, rather than just another cog in the business wheel to meet the bottom-line or performance, is essential in maintaining morale and high-quality productivity.

Employers must follow these simple tips to successfully leverage an employee’s input and maintain employee satisfaction:

  • Provide thorough onboarding
  • Enable new employees a transition and training period to gain an in-depth awareness of the business’s goals, process, and current bottom-line and/or performance statistics
  • Communication with new employees is imperative! Be open to feedback, new ideas, and criticism.
    • Conduct weekly or bi-weekly check-ins during the onboarding phase
  • Provide performance reviews with two-way dialogue and feedback rather than only a rating
  • Maintain high-quality standards for all employees
  • Establish and maintain training courses directly correlated to a business’s needs
    • Properly implement the process or skills after each training program increases employee satisfaction and improve business process for increased revenue/performance
  • Establish an ongoing feedback system for business growth and innovation
  • Be open to and implement new ideas, advancement, and innovation

These simple processes will allow for increased employee morale and lowered turnover rates, and will inevitably drive up a business’s ability to grow, be innovative, and see a higher ROI!

5. Lack of Cross-departmental Communication

Finally, while listed last, this is ultimately the one element that can create the most hostility and loss of productivity in a business. Regardless of size, businesses must implement a communication strategy to convey ideas, concerns, or problems. Communication and idea sharing, across all levels, executive, management, to essential personnel, is the fundamental catalyst for a business to see the highest level of ROI and revenue.

A change in cross-departmental communication can be advantageous for a business’s ROI on revenue/performance if an investment is made to creating a plan of innovation, staff training, and communication. Do NOT become the business who closes their doors for unwillingness to change!

– Vanessa Dodds, President & Owner of Connections 4 Success