Mary Ann Weerts was in India on a rug sourcing assignment. “We visited a factory that was involved in pit looming,” she says. “They would dig a pit in the ground and the loom would go into the ground. The workers were handed a ladder that went into the pit, and their job was like … Continue reading Control of cash flow helps clothing manufacturer sustain fair trade
Are cash flow struggles holding your business back? You’re not alone. The most recent C2FO Working Capital Outlook Survey reports that cash flow problems are the biggest obstacle to business growth for 55% of small and midsize businesses. The following tools can help you monitor and forecast cash flow so you can maintain a supply … Continue reading Best metrics for monitoring and forecasting cash flow
What is the best pace to grow a business: fast or slow? The answer depends on several factors, including your business’s stage in the life cycle, your resources, and your tolerance for risk. The first thing to consider is what stage of the life cycle is your business in. Is it in the startup stage … Continue reading Fast or slow: what is the right pace for business growth?
Are your sales and marketing efforts focused on attracting new customers? If so, you’re not alone. In a study conducted last year, four out of five businesses surveyed said they planned to increase spending on customer acquisition in 2017, while just two out of five planned to spend more on customer retention. But if you … Continue reading How to grow your business, part 2: increase sales to existing customers
Sunday Afternoons has carved a successful niche and customer following over the last 25 years for its line of sun protective hats and other clothing items. But it’s “giving back” program could be considered a template for other businesses seeking to become more socially responsible corporate citizens. When the International Dark Sky Association needed financial … Continue reading Oregon-based Sunday Afternoons proves that doing good is good for business
Spikes of business growth can happen at any time. Sometimes, they result from careful planning and other times, they arise unexpectedly and take you by surprise. However they come about, sudden spikes of business growth can put your business at risk. How can you manage rapid growth and still stay stable? These tips will help. … Continue reading How to manage spikes of growth without risking your business
Your business is beyond the startup stage and you’re looking to grow by expanding your product line. Here’s what you need to consider before you start. Are You Ready for Product Expansion? Before you launch a new product line, make sure your current product line is solid. A strong foundation is essential before you expand. … Continue reading How to grow your business through product expansion
There are plenty of places a growing business can invest its money, but not enough money to do it all (well, not all at once, anyway). You may need to invest in: Equipment, technology, machinery Human resources Marketing and sales Materials and inventory All of the above With limited capital, how do you decide what … Continue reading How to prioritize the costs of growing a business
The average U.S. small-business owner has $195,000 of debt, according to a 2016 Experian study. Is that too much — or too little? What’s the relationship between the amount of debt and business success? “There isn’t one,” contends Kevin Ehinger, VP of Market Operations at global working capital exchange C2FO. “Obviously, too much debt is … Continue reading What is the relationship between amount of debt and business success?
What can you do when your business’s pace of growth requires more capital than you can get with your existing line of credit or your available collateral for asset-based lending? “Extreme growth businesses are very difficult to finance conventionally,” says Kevin Ehinger, VP of Market Operations at global working capital exchange C2FO and a former … Continue reading Alternative funding sources for fast-growing businesses
Michael Pliskin and a group of colleagues set out several years ago on a mission. Their goal was to improve quality, increase access, boost efficiency and lower costs in the fast evolving world of health care. Their tenacity, creativity and hard work led to MedM, a software engineering company that specializes in mobile patient monitoring … Continue reading Tech start up success: focus on relationships first, then technology
Steve Aharrah remembers the first time he inspected his new office at Embassy Powdered Metals. There was no computer on his desk, only a pencil and a notepad. There also wasn’t a company-provided cell phone, since the company’s owners assumed its new president would conduct business during regular working hours only. This was in 2011. … Continue reading Embassy Powdered Metals redefines their business strategy to grow 400% and double headcount
This article is Part 2 of a four-part series on managing seasonal businesses. For most seasonal business owners, the dream is to make the business less seasonal (unless, of course, you’re a ski equipment manufacturer who loves to spend all summer surfing instead of working in your business). Instead of making all your income in a … Continue reading Managing a seasonal business, Part 2: How to extend your season
This article is Part 1 of a four-part series on how to manage the challenges of a seasonal business. Running a seasonal business presents many challenges, from hiring and managing seasonal workers to marketing and planning for growth. But perhaps the most important hurdle a seasonal business owner must overcome is managing cash flow. When your … Continue reading Managing a seasonal business
Like fire, the Internet, or the “reply all” option on your email, business debt can be either helpful or harmful, depending on how you use it. Debt used properly is a tool for business growth. When debt gets out of hand, however, it can hinder business growth, make it hard to find financing, and make … Continue reading How do you know when you have too much business debt?