Allocating Time for New Business Development: Just One of The Challenges Facing Busy Entrepreneurs

How do you allocate time for new business development? It’s the bane of many entrepreneurs and small business people. “I am so busy with my current projects that I don’t have time to drum up new business.” I know exactly what they’re talking about. I remember a period where I had so many writing projects on the go that I did no marketing. I just waited for the business to come in. The problem is that unless you market yourself, the business can slow to a trickle, regardless of the previous complaints that you have:

  • Too much work already
  • Not enough time to do anything else
  • Not enough money to spend on proposals that may not pay off

I completely understand. Understanding, however, doesn’t get you anywhere, so let me make some suggestions to keep the business coming.

The first suggestion is that you dedicate some time to new business every day. It need only be half an hour, but whatever time segment you decide on, lock it in. Just put everything aside, hold your phone calls, shut down the cell and leave your e-mail alone. Next, do the following. Get yourself one of those small digital timers, punch in the time segment you’ve chosen, then, turn the timer away from you so you can’t see it. Now, focus on the work at hand.

During this time segment consider what new business you want to get into, or actually work on a new business proposal. What you might also do, and this will impact your own staff, is get the staff to join you in your sessions; and plan a session at least once a week, and brainstorm new ideas. Who better than your own staff to carry out this activity in search of new business? And encourage them to look for business opportunities that you may be unaware of through networking, or contacts they have with friends and associates. Even submit a speculative or unsolicited proposal to a client.

Here’s an idea I really like. It comes from Verne Harnish, CEO of Gazelles Inc, an executive education firm. Verne suggests that you should stop eating alone. Verne’s experience is that in one year, living in Barcelona, he built deeper business, social, and political connections than in ten years living and working in Washington DC. What could you do if you were to meet someone different even a couple of days a week? You might not generate new business immediately, but the payoff down the line could be substantial.

I understand that cash flow can get in the way of such activities. I appreciate that the current projects you’re working on have stringent timelines. In fact you’re probably working a 60-hour week. But don’t let that get in the way of allocating time for new business by pursuing practical ways to make it happen, even on your busy schedule.

Abstract: Busy people often get too busy and fail to continue marketing themselves. Small businesses, like consultants and training companies, often find themselves in this situation. This article looks at the issue and suggests some practical solutions. It’s up to you to follow up on them.

Team Building For Business Development

To remain competitive and secure in the new economy, it is imperative that companies communicate to their employees the critical importance of proactive branding, marketing and business development. It is essential that Managements outline corporate sales objectives and needs thus creating an innovative business development atmosphere amongst all team members. The new corporate culture builds the team for “exciting-times ahead” by communicating the key strengths, opportunities and competitive advantages of their company by first ensuring that all stakeholders are “on-message”.

An astute business leader will subsequently promote branding, marketing and business development activities as factors vital to establishing the “next growth level” of the company. A well-defined brand experience, the creation of a strategic plan, addressing areas of improvement, identifying competition, and segmenting internal and external target audiences are critical components for continued success. Ultimately, all team members are to externally “transfer this knowledge” to clients, suppliers, prospective customers, community, and, of course, to their families. The number of sales people working on business development must directly reflect the number of employees in the firm, e.g., a 100-person firm has 100 business development people. In the new economy, the act of “team selling” is no longer a “luxury” for a select few but a critical “necessity” for all.

Five Key Steps to Creating the Brand Strategy, Building the Team Spirit
and Launching the Brand Experience:

Strategic Research and Planning

o Mission Statement Development
o Vision Statement Development
o Business Planning
o S.W.O.T. Assessment
o Competition Analysis Assembly
o Risk Assessment Review

Sourcing Your Competitive Advantages

o Unique Selling Proposition Construction
o Brand Experience Program Creation
o Sales and Marketing Planning
o Product and Service Lifecycle Investigation
o Sales Team Building
o Corporate Sales Scripting

Responsibilities of a Business Development Manager

Business development encompasses a number of activities, techniques, and strategies designed to improve efficiency and increase productivity in a business organization or firm. Professionals involved in this process of development play an integral role as they help grow an economic enterprise. Some of the various techniques and methodologies used by these professionals are marketing assessments, learning about competition in the market, generating leads, follow-up sales activity, research on target markets, and evaluation of business potential.

When appointed as a business development manager, the duties and responsibilities dramatically increase. The entire load of promoting the business, improving credibility, and increasing productivity is laid on the shoulders of the manager. He or she has multi-task roles to play in such a situation. Some of the most important responsibilities of a business development manager are as follows:

• Investigate the economic conditions of the market.

• Research on the financial issues and bring out an appropriate solution.

• Learn about the latest trends and the growing competition in the market.

• Prepare a perfect business plan in accordance to the set goals and objectives.

• Maintain financial records of the company and stay within the proposed budget throughout the life of the business.

• Improve networking with other renowned businesses in the market.

• Strengthen customer base with commitment to quality issues and high customer satisfaction.

• Learn about the expansion of other companies in the same field of business.

• Motivate employees and push to work more efficiently and logically.

• Understand the needs and requirements of the business growth plan.

• Learn about the strengths and weaknesses that someway or the other impact growth potential.

• Develop innovative techniques and adopt new strategies to keep pace with the advancing business world.

• Explore new opportunities to achieve profit targets.

• Learn about new marketing tactics and implement the same for marketing specified products and services.

• Negotiate with clients and customers to enjoy higher profit margins.

• Ensure smooth functioning of all business operations within the organization.

To know more, check Business Development Manager.