As a business coach and consultant, every business I work with is different, but there is one common theme. Profit (or lack of it).
To facilitate business growth, one of the first projects I introduce is a financial matrix. That’s a forensic exploration of sales performance, profit and loss, cashflow and cost of sale. Almost without exception, creating a true financial picture is an awakening experience for the client.
Why? The figures never lie, and I created this unique matrix to show businesses how simple shifts in costs of sale, performance and process can be transformational, even in the short term. Even a five per cent increase in cost of sale, combined with the same in productivity creates exponential profits that are transformational for most businesses.
On paper, a Colchester-based client, (just one of the cases studies featured on my website) had worked hard to become a market leader and had significantly increased turnover and sales conversion rates. When I started working with them in October 2017, they couldn’t understand how turnover had increased by fourteen per cent, with no profit benefits.
In the client’s own words, “I’ve always said,‘ chase the customer’s happiness and the sales will follow’ and, to a degree, that’s true but there’s little point chasing extra sales, turnover and market share without a relative increase to the bottom line. In short, last year (our twelfth year in business) we realised we were becoming busy fools fixated on the wrong type of business growth.”
Working with me to analyse costs, efficiencies and processes has transformed this business. In just eight months, net profits have increased by more than 500 per cent, targeted growth by twenty per cent, and with a five-year roadmap in place, the business can look forward to a sustainable future.
The matrix, which I developed over twenty-five years running my own manufacturing business, works. Understanding costs in their entirety is where many businesses stumble, yet that is where immediate profit can be generated. These tools are available exclusively to my clients and deliver an immediate, significant and tangible return on investment.
If you have spent 2018 wondering why you’re busy but still struggling with cashflow, feel you have underperforming departments, or just want to take your business to the next level, then now is the time to make changes. I can’t promise it will be easy, or painless, but as most business owners will tell you, no pain, no gain!
About Stuart Allan
- Stuart Allan is a business consultant and growth specialist based in Colchester, Essex and works with companies throughout the South-East.
- Stuart founded Essex-based premium dessert company Indulgence Patisserie Ltd in 1987, turning it into a multi-million-pound international operation by the time of its sale in 2013.
- Accredited to the Government’s Growth Accelerator Programme, Stuart is a Business Mentor with the British Army and has been appointed as the on-site business coach at the Essex CEME Campus.