Ignoring the Stock Price
Companies that ignore their stock price do so at their peril.
While it is crucially important to concentrate on the basic business of the company, if a company is not mindful of what happens to its stock price, it may find it is in for a rude shock. If the stock price falls too low, investors may lose confidence in management, and critical investors may sell out. If the stock price falls too low, a takeover may happen. A company needs to pay attention both to its basic business and it its stock price.
Ignoring the company’s stock price is a mistake.
Ignoring the Stock Price
Success Needs Sufficient Capital Resources
To succeed in business, you need sufficient capital resources. In fact, it is said that the number one source of failure for small business is running out of money.
If you do not have a realistic assessment of the money that is needed to implement your business plan, you run the risk of running out of money. If you run out of money, your business may likely fail. Failure to have a realistic understanding of the amount of money that is required for the business overall and to implement certain new ventures, particularly, can lead to ruin.
Failing to have adequate money for the business can be a mistake.
30 Retaining the Wrong Professional Advisor
From time to time companies and senior executives inevitably are involved in circumstances that are not familiar to them. In those circumstances, it is a good idea to retain a professional advisor. But it can be disastrous if the wrong advisor is retained.
Often the decision about the advisor who is retained is much more controlling in determining the outcome that is achieved than are the merits of the strategy pursued, the potential of the new business opportunity, what diligence is employed, or how much resources are expended. If you retain the wrong advisor, you may end up with an unfortunate outcome.
Retaining the wrong advisor is a mistake.
11 Promoting Traffic at the Expense of Profitability
Seeking to establish themselves in a new market, some companies may emphasize customer traffic—to the exclusion of whether they make any money on those so-called customers.
As Peter Drucker has observed, it is a fundamental business truth that the purpose of business is to create and retain a customer. But if you do not make any money on your customers, you do not have a business. Generating traffic without revenue and profitable customer transactions is a sure way to financial ruin. This lesson was relearned by many dot-com technology companies in the 1990s, who promoted traffic to their websites but failed to establish a viable business model. Numerous dot-com companies that failed did not sufficiently understand that, at the end of the day, maximizing hits is much less important than generating revenues in amounts more than the expenses incurred in
achieving those revenues, so that the business can make a profit and sustain itself.
Promoting customer traffic at the expense of good business is a mistake.
1 Failing to Employ a Structured Decision Process
Decisions made without a structured, systematic process may be less than optimal.
Business school courses, academic textbooks, and training programs concerning decision making provide structured approaches, decision models, and tips to make better decisions. The classic approach involves defining the problem, identifying alternatives, undertaking quantitative analyses and qualitative assessments, exploring the risks, and then choosing the best course of action. While a structured decision making process is central to management, too often that approach is ignored.
Failing to employ a structured decision process can be a mistake.
1 Strategic Incongruency
Strategy, to be effective, must be congruent.
If balance and consistency between different parts of the business strategy are lacking, the resulting incongruence compromises the prospects of business success. Strategy congruency means that there is a reasonable connection between one part of a strategy and another part of a strategy. The purposes of one part of the enterprise are complementary to those of another part of the enterprise. The goals of one division are supportive of, and in parallel with, the goals of another division.
1 No Plan
A surprising number of companies operate with no plan.
If you operate with no plan, you are proceeding in reliance on spontaneous, reactive, and even impromptu action—rather than on the basis of deliberate, considered approaches to the business. If what is to be done is not much thought about in advance, the opportunity for reflection, consideration and choosing the best way is quite limited. Without a plan, the benefits of plans—focus on priorities, assignment of responsibilities, accountability for results—cannot be realized. Enterprises with plans achieve greater and more frequent success than those that lack them. For as it has insightfully been said, failing to plan is planning to fail.
Not having a plan is a mistake.
In Lewis Carroll’s classic book, Through the Looking Glass, the Red Queen prophetically informs Alice, “You must run as fast as you can just to stay in the same place. If you want to get ahead, you must run at least twice as fast.” Today, however, even running as fast as you can will not necessarily allow you to stay in the same place. To cope with and prevail in the challenges of life today, you need an effective strategy. You need either to do what you did before—very, very well—or to do something differently.
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