We get it, starting a business is not always an instant success. SMRT Systems was founded in 2015, and the first two years were particularly humbling for us. We didn’t know a ton of people in the industry or have access to fancy investors. We made plenty of mistakes, but our passion for both the dry cleaning industry and technology enabled us to push on.
We listened to our customers’ critiques and implemetended them in order to improve our product. We brought in the experts, and became experts ourselves on delivery cloud computing, supply chain, AI, security, and much more. Growth was strong and steady because of our hard work and constructive relationship we held with our customers. Currently, we have sustained an A+ reputation in the dry cleaning industry because of our top tier technology, superior customer support, and consistent growth. We value our customer feedback, and use that to continuously improve our product and services.
Here at SMRT, we understand the commitment and perseverance it takes to stay in business every day. Below are some of the most common reasons businesses fail; keeping these items in mind when coming up with your business plan, will help you stay on the right track:
- No planning or strategy: Make sure you have a solid business plan in place to ensure you are prepared for your success as well as your challenges. A plan is the only way that you will know which way the wind is blowing. You want this written down and updated as things change.
- Inability to learn from your mistakes: No business is perfect. Successful businesses learn from their failures and make changes to guide them as they encounter obstacles.
- Losing your focus: Spend your time on the big picture, and set your employees up for success with the right tools like automation, clear goals, integrated software that keeps them organized and productive, and then let them do their job.
- Putting your hand in the cookie jar: A big No no! Use business money for the business: Eventually your company will slow down, and you’ll need money available to operate through the tough times.
- Over-expansion: Success at one location doesn’t guarantee success somewhere else. Be wary of new costs, slow revenue growth, and other distractions from managing your time efficiently.
- Bad locations: Remember to fail fast and stop the bleeding. A bad store will cost you a fortune if you don’t watch out. Make sure your stores are easily accessible to customers, in a thriving neighborhood, visually appealing, and convenient for you to get to.
- Lack of capital and/or profit: Have a solid business plan, hire good employees, save money, and invest in both software and hardware automation to ensure that costs stay down and profits stay up.
- No succession plan: Not knowing who is going to take over when you retire or get sick can be disastrous. Only 30%of businesses survive this transition, so make sure that you have a real plan B. A real manager or partner is critical to your peace of mind.
And, most importantly remember……..success doesn’t happen overnight!