How small businesses can work smarter to get ahead

We’ve all heard this expression before: work smarter, not harder. And no, it’s not just the mantra of lazy people everywhere. But it should be the mantra of every small business.

Small businesses are by their very nature, well, small. It’s an uphill struggle and you have to put in the effort to make the business work. And with a smaller team, small bumps in the road will slow you down more than it would one of the big guys. It’s David vs Goliath. But we all know who won that fight…

It might be October, but we’re not here to put the fear into all you smaller businesses. Instead, we’re here to suggest ways to get ahead. Namely, how to work smarter to secure yourself a stronger, more resilient future.

What do we mean by working smarter?

SMEs make up 99.9% of UK businesses. So it’s fair to say competition is tough. There are plenty of other businesses just like yours, trying to offer the very same thing. It’s like The Matrix and you’re fighting off all the Agent Smiths. So you might think the solution is to work harder to pull ahead. But really, you need to be thinking about how to work smarter. See, it’s come full circle from the intro.

If your services can’t set you apart, how you operate as a business can. Being smart with your business’s money, time, and productivity is how you become the Usain Bolt amongst your competitors.

It’s all about performance

Business relationships are increasingly becoming more results-based. Clients want performance models that prove exactly how investing in your business will provide returns for them. And if they don’t get the results they want, they’ll leave. It’s as simple as that. While we wish we could impress them with some mad juggling skills, they want something a bit more concrete.

So how do you show you’re up to the task? You show them how you’re using your resources smarter than anyone else. Understand where yours and your internal team’s time is best spent. It likely isn’t doing the mundane, tedious jobs that slow you down to a snail’s pace. You need to be focusing on generating value and profits. But those administrative jobs don’t just disappear.

Strategic partnerships

Which brings us onto the benefits of strategic partnerships. What’s better than one business working smarter? How about two businesses working smarter together. You can bring in outside support to keep your business profitable, successful, and running smoothly. 

By looking outside your organisation, you can significantly increase the output of your team – for example, take your ten-man team to twenty-people strong – without actually hiring those ten extra people. This is a great solution to deal with those mundane tasks we were talking about. 

Think about how often your team has to answer the phone. It needs doing – you can’t just ignore your calls. But why hire all the extra staff just to do that? Is the smarter thing not to bring in a partner to handle that?

It’s a kind of ‘uber-ification’ of your business tasks. It used to be companies felt they had to have these teams to hand. Everyone needed their own call centre. But now, you can have one only when you want. Do you just want to cover a 4-hour block? Or only while you’re out-of-hours? Then you can. It’s a more fluid business model that just so happens to save you time and money.

We’re not saying you shouldn’t carry on building up your team. It just means you can employ more staff who will help you grow and bring in results. Your internal team focuses on performance while your partnership focuses on everything else. Now that’s what we call working smart. And we’re pretty sure any investors will, too.

Nothing grinds your productivity to a halt quite like having to answer the phone. But that’s where alldayPA comes in. We provide a 24/7 call answering service to ensure your calls are covered while you focus on what really matters: your business. Get in touch on 0345 056 8888 to find out more.