So what kind of existing assets should your business be utilizing? These are the top 4 assets that many businesses already possess:
It’s easy for business owners to get focused on a single area, but many business owners are experts in other areas as well. In fact, time after time Marcus will go into struggling businesses only to find that one of the owners actually possesses an important skill that’s needed to help the business achieve its full potential but it’s going unutilized. For instance, a key lime pie company that Marcus visits needs to improve their recipe because they’re using all pre-made ingredients. So Marcus launches a search to find a chef with a great pie crust recipe, only to discover that the owner is actually a great baker and he makes a delicious crust. The company wasn’t using his recipe because he had decided early on that it would be too expensive to do so. Instead of just letting this expertise go to waste, Marcus works with the ingredient costs to find a way to make it fit into their cost structure and allow them to be even more profitable than they were before!
In many cases Marcus will discover that a business is failing because the owner that had all of the relevant experience needed to make it successful left or was driven out due to a difference of opinion or personality conflict. In one case a fast casual restaurant had multiple owners and the only one with any restaurant experience was kicked out because the other owners simply didn’t like him (despite the fact that he had developed the menu and done all of the cooking at the beginning). Bringing him back was essential to making sure that the business could take steps forward. In another case, two brothers were making musical instruments and the one brother who was actually a musician had walked away from the business because he didn’t feel valued. Again, bringing him back was the key to turning the business around.
The lesson here is that life experience is crucial when it comes to running a successful business, which means that keeping key employees around or hiring employees who have industry experience is essential. People are often a business’s most important asset, which is why retaining and hiring the right people should be a top priority for every business!
A Business Network
Marcus has a large network of businesses that he’s invested in, which puts him in a great position to make connections within this web to benefit all parties involved. For instance, he has a car trade-in program that he uses to supply inventory to his automotive dealership, a bottling company that he uses to fulfill orders for his salon haircare brand, a custom lighting company that he had outfit the unique retail space for his candy company, etc. He has his hands in enough areas that he can work “in-house” to get reasonable pricing and establish trustworthy partnerships.
Now, there are very few of us with a network that looks like Marcus Lemonis’ but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have a business network at all. All of us have former colleagues, local contacts, friends, family, etc. that we are connected to, and those connections make up a treasure trove of potential that we can pull from when it comes to improving our businesses. This is why it’s so important to establish and keep good relationships with people that we meet!
It may surprise you to discover that knowing where you want to go is actually a business asset. Having a clear plan of what you want to accomplish and how you want to get there is invaluable in the business world. Now that’s not to say that you can’t deviate from this plan as opportunities arise, but having a plan in place is key to succeeding! Marcus reminds us of this fact every time he meets a business owner and asks why they started their business and what their dream is for the business in the long run. Sometimes business owners won’t have a clear idea of what they want the future to look like, so Marcus will work with them to develop a plan and vision.
Now that you know what your business’s best assets are, put them to work! Remember that while you don’t necessarily have the same assets to draw on that Marcus Lemonis does, you can still get a lot of mileage out of what you are working with! Use what you already have as your competitive advantage when it comes to developing your marketing plan, making strategic investments, and shaping your product line.
Kate Pierce is the owner of LionShark Digital Marketing LLC, a West Michigan internet marketing company. Her areas of expertise include Paid Search, Search Engine Optimization, Social Media, Web Consulting for small businesses, Copywriting and Local Online Marketing. She lives in the Grand Rapids area with her husband and enjoys cooking, watching sports and spending time outdoors. Like a true digital marketing expert (i.e. geek), she loves talking about marketing theory and SEM trends… so don’t say you weren’t warned!