Running a small business that steers clear of most major challenges (hiring the wrong employees, financial hiccups, a bad overall economy, staying compliant with all rules and regulations etc.) can sometimes seem all but impossible.
That said there are countless small business owners nationwide who have dodged their fair share of bullets over the years, allowing them to keep their companies steady and moving forward.
So, what might your small business need if things have been a bit difficult or even worse as of late?
Is it Time to Seek Help?
In order for your small business to right the ship and get back on track, there are myriad of options at your doorstep.
- Go to the experts – Your small business might have reached the point where it needs to find PEO and ASO experts. If you’re unsure what one or both of these areas are, they are Professional Employer Organization and Administrative Services Organization, respectively. The former provides outsourced H.R. services for small businesses like yours, while the latter is a good option for handling your critical payroll and tax filing needs. For those small businesses being run by one person (no employees involved), there is oftentimes no need to seek expert help, unless it is on specific matters related to running the company. On the flip side, small businesses with employees do have more on their plates as far as potential health insurance benefits, workers’ compensation, payroll and tax issues, and more. Just to be clear, while one-person small businesses must of course file tax paperwork, doing it for one person as opposed to dozens makes the task typically much easier to do. Lastly, small businesses with multiple workers will undoubtedly come across human resource issues from time to time (employee complaints etc.). Having a professional organization to direct you on how best to handle such matters is important;
- Take a step back – If your small business is currently struggling, take a step back and look at what made you successful in the first place. In some cases, you might just be going through a rough patch or two. In other cases, your small business has clearly gotten off track. In order to save your brand from going under, you might have to take some drastic steps. Whether that is letting some employees go or severely cutting back on your advertising and/or marketing budgets, take the time to review where you were, where you are now, and how you get back to being successful once again;
- Look to investors – If saving your small business means bringing in one or more investors give the idea some serious thought. While your brand may be a great one, it may just be lacking the right amount of financial support to keep it moving forward. In the event you consider the investing idea, you should tread carefully, making sure anyone who has shown an interest in putting money into your brand is totally legit. The last thing you want to happen is have what you thought was a sound investment in your brand turn into a scam. Another item of importance is being sure that you understand all the financial language discussed in any potential agreement. Having a legal mind review such paperwork is always a sound idea. Lastly, would you consider turning to family and/or friends to invest in your small business? While there are plenty of such small business investments nationwide, some small business owners are hesitant to involve a family member (could even be someone you were married to at one time) or friend. For obvious reasons, such investment deals can potentially cause problems between those who know one another. Even when family or friends agree to invest in your small company, make sure everything is documented, thereby avoiding any potential rifts in the relationship/s.
Going either the PEO or ASO route can prove beneficial for your small business, so keep both doors open.
With all you have to do in order to keep your small company afloat, sometimes having others (especially those with experience) along for the ride can prove to be the best decision you ever made.
About the Author: Dave Thomas writes about small business topics on the web.