|Be Your Own Consultant (one three hour class)
You will take an outside view of your business. You will ask questions that a consultant would ask. Just as from an airplane where in the view from 30,000 feet the clutter doesn't get in the way you will see the big picture more clearly.
You will consider the biggest challenges you are facing over the next twelve months and develop a SWOT analysis for your business.
You will define your Business Model (why customers would use your business) and your Revenue Model (how you make money with your customers).
You will use a top level view of your financials to identify where the problems and opportunities are. Cash Flow is a symptom - seldom the cause. You will consider ways to reduce your cost of operations. You will learn an easy to use Break Even method. The goal is to be profitable in times of minimal sales improvement and to be better prepared to grow as the economy rebounds.
As you focus on the material covered in class for the following week and a half you will set basic improvement goals and set up easy to measure performance metrics. You will know where you are, and where it is that you plan to go.
You will identify your most profitable products and your most profitable customers. All sales are not equal nor are all customers equal. You will strive to see your products and services through the eyes of the consumer. You will consider consumer behavior - and market your products and services based on their behavior, rather than trying and expecting to change behavior.
The current economic recession has significantly changed consumer behavior. You need to seek to understand how your customers think, act and feel in order to market effectively to them.
You will develop market segmentation strategies and identify the most desirable and likely target markets upon which to design your marketing messages, strategies and tactics. You will consider ways to position your company and products in the minds of consumers in your marketplace.
You will consider the value of branding and product differentiation - you never want to become a commodity where only your price is different. You will consider marketing and sales as relationship building - rather than a series of transactions.
You will consider the roles of relationship building, customer service, training, public relations, networking, and viral marketing as ways to attract and retain customers. You will consider strategies and tactics to implement your marketing plans.
You will rediscover the importance of sales forecasting and measurement as well as other ways to monitor your marketing to suggest improvement.
You will leave class with an Outline to Develop your own Marketing Plan - and you will be prepared to do so. You should complete most of your Marketing Plan over the next week and a half.
Develop Your Business Plan
(one three hour class)
There is a reason the Business Plan class is after the Consultant and Marketing Plan classes. It is difficult to develop the infrastructure for your business (Business Plan) before you know where you are and where you want to go (Consultant). It is also difficult to plan a Bottom Line before you develop your plans to gain revenue on your Top Line (Marketing Plan).
You must deliver all that you promise in your marketing which must be perceived by the customer as being of value and you must do so in a profitable and sustainable manner -- hence the need for a realistic and manageable Business Plan.
You will work with a well structured Business Plan shell and develop key Financial, Marketing, Operations and Management strategies and tactics to develop your plan. You will focus on the Key Success Areas for your business. There are all sorts of things to do...many of which do not matter but take up time. You will learn what specific things matter the most to the success of your business and will develop strategies and tactics for these Key Success Areas to drive your Business Plan.
You will leave class with an easy to use Outline to develop your own Business Plan - and you will be prepared to implement the plan that you develop. You will be prepared to modify your plan based upon performance metrics that you develop. You will be able to go back and Be your Own Consultant to evaluate performance and revisit your Marketing Plan to Manage your Business as if Profit Really Mattered.
All of this does not magically happen as a result of you taking a series of three hour classes.
- You must prepare before class so that you are ready to specifically apply to your business the proven concepts that will be covered
- You must be completely engaged and actively participate during the classes
- You must immediately follow up each class by completing the homework assignments relative to your specific business situation
- You must take specific action to put your Marketing Plan into effect and must implement your Business Plan
- You must actively monitor and tweak your Marketing and Business Plans - they are living documents which require commitment, performance and self accountability
To help you succeed each of the JSBSC class sessions will have:
- A class instructor/leader and at least one other consultant in attendance to help you develop specific applications of the concepts studied for your business
- A set of materials to complete before class and to bring to class with you
- Work sheets and handouts for note taking during class
- Homework, worksheets and materials for your use after class
During the week and a half following each class, the JSBSC consultants will be available by phone to provide guidance as you develop the specific plans for your business.
By the end of the two months, a result of taking the 3 PAK of classes and doing the homework to specifically apply to your business the concepts and processes studied, you will have a Marketing Plan and a Business Plan that when actually implemented will drive your business toward sustained success.
You will be managing your Business as if Profit really mattered.