I ask you the question, “Does your company have blurred vision?” because I feel it is one of the biggest reasons why companies fail. I’ll give you some of my tips to help prevent “Blurred Vision”.
Keep these in mind when starting a company and when growing a company.
1. Get on the same page:
Whether it’s you and a partner or you and 20 people it is so critical that everyone is on the same page. If you are a solo entrepreneur write down what your business does, explain to family and friends, and know it like the back of your hand. Before we first launched unifyrr, @charlesjamerlan and I talked day after day refining our “pitch”, determining our audience, and figuring out our individual roles. Without it we would have looked unorganized and our odds would have been in favor of failing even before we launched.
2. Set Goals (vision board)
Individual and Team goals need to be set before you launch your business and every year after that. A vision board is a fun way to set those goals. Some people even say if you create a vision board your goals will come true. A few examples would be an image of a new conference room (if you’re a startup and you want a office space, this is a great image to help motivate that goal), or if a new roof for your house is one of your goals put that on the vision board. If you want to make the INC5000 then put it up there as well. Maybe your goal is financial independence put it down. Set goals for the amount of calls you’ll make per day/week and hold yourself accountable (failing to do this will only hurt you, your family, your business, and all involved). Make your vision board yours, realistic, and make it motivate you.
3. Discuss the “what ifs”
- Someone wants to buy your business; you have a partner; are you both willing to sell? How’s the payout work?
- Your partner no longer wants to be a part of the business; what do you do as a business, as an individual? – Mutual buy-out agreement
4. Discuss the specifics right away
- At what point do you both start taking a salary?
- How much money stays in the business?
- How many vacation days do we get?
- What’s the vision for the culture?
- What is the percentage split? 50/50 is not a good answer here. – 4 reasons why
- Need a clear tie breaker process
- Mutual buy-out agreement
- First right of refusal (partner can’t change without your agreement)
- Clear defined roles and authority
It’s important to review your business if you didn’t consider these things in the past. Your success and growth are dependent upon whether or not you have “Blurred Vision” or a clear path ahead of you. If you are just starting out don’t let “Blurred Vision” happen to you.