Having good people around you is critical in business. Often running a business can be a lonely place, but with the right people around you then it can feel that little bit easier.
One of my favourite tools, the one-page Business Model Canvas prompts you to think about who else makes up the structure of your business. I like to include people that are external to my company and not just employees, but all stakeholders, as without the likes of subcontractors, suppliers, personal relationships, advisers and networking colleagues, it’s a very small world indeed. All these people want and need your business to be a success, so they will definitely have your back.
Let’s look at why they’ve got your back
Employees and subcontractors
They need a steady income, career progression, National Insurance and pension contributions, but you also provide employees with personal development, gratitude and trust. They’ll have your back, but often in a very different way to other stakeholders in your business. If you provide the right things for them, they’ll return with loyalty and commitment.
Suppliers and vendors
Their stake in your company centres around a revenue stream for their own business. If you stop using them, they lose a customer and revenue drops. If you stop using them and discredit their business, it drops even further. If you tell your network and community about them, you could increase their customer base and revenue. They’ll have your back to make sure you’ve got theirs.
This group of people have likely been with you through the good times and the bad, maybe from your early days in business, or have watched you grow and develop into an established brand. You rely on them to be your external sales and marketing force, ambassadors that refer their own clients to you. And they rely on you’re the same.
Those personal friends and family members want to share your success and celebrate your wins with you. Often this support is unconditional, and everyone needs a cheerleader in their life!
Advisors and mentors
These people also want to share your successes. If you can celebrate a win thanks to advice they’ve given you, then they succeed as well. This support, however, is not unconditional. You will occasionally be held to account, asked to demonstrate the importance of a decision and pay for the advice. This makes you a revenue stream in their business as well as a potential ambassador.
Business is a bumpy journey for many of us and having people that look out for us is not only super helpful, but essential. I’d like you take a few moments and think about who’s got YOUR back in business?
Who are the top 10 people you would call if you needed help or support? Where do they fall within the stakeholders list above?
Then, think about how you manage your relationship with those 10 on an ongoing basis and not just when YOU need them, are you there for THEM too…
I have some free resources on my website to help with this topic, here are a few you could start with:
The Entrepreneur’s Table – A peer group support network