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Business Change Management

Business Change Management

How To Get Family And Friends To Invest In Your Startup

On May 2, 2018 6:52:19 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, business growth strategies, Start-ups

 

Do you have a brilliant idea for a startup but have little or no capital to bring it to life? Feeling guilty that you’re mentally running through a list of wealthy relatives and financially stable friends whom you can hit up for an investment? Don’t feel bad. Some of the most successful startups were funded by those nearest and dearest to the founder.

Why You Should Pitch to Family and Friends

It’s no secret that when looking for investors for your startup, the first people you should approach are those in your inner circle. In fact, they may even be offended if you don’t. Moreover, if you contact venture capitalists or angel investors first, these “financial types” may question why no one from your family, friends or community are backing you. This may in turn lead them to question your integrity and credibility. 

Yet, it’s understandable why you might be hesitant to involve family and friends. Not everyone has entrepreneurial families (like Walmart) who get excited at the thought of a new business venture. For those people, it’s almost expected of them to either take up the family business or build something of their own, and tapping the relatives is practically a given.

However, some families just aren’t adventurous when it comes to investing in business ideas. Maybe they’re in traditional office jobs and have been employees most of their lives, with little risk involved. Maybe they’ve raised a family and have never worked outside the home. Or maybe they’re just not good at envisioning what could be rather than what already is. These types will be more difficult to convince.

So if you’re an entrepreneur, it’s up to you to present your idea in a way that proves you’ve considered all the potential risks and rewards. To get you started, here are some tips on how to approach family and friends to help you launch your new business:

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Why Is the Buyer's Journey Critical for Successful Entrepreneurs?

On Apr 10, 2018 8:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Inbound Marketing, business growth strategies, buyers journey

Thanks to the digital revolution, people are not buying things the way they used to—they just aren't. The old sales funnel we knew for decades is long gone. 

As entrepreneurs, this means that you now need to build your business growth strategies differently in order to capture buyers on their journey, not yours. Since the buyer’s journey is an essential framework for any marketing strategy, you must start to think like your buyer and understand the steps he or she is taking to make a purchase decision. 

This new mindset is crucial if you are going build your sales volume fast enough to succeed. 

How Has the Buying Game Changed?

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Entrepreneurs: Focus On Unmet Needs Through Visual Exploration

On Mar 27, 2018 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Corporate Anthropology, business growth strategies, anthropology tool kit, change

 

If you are an emerging entrepreneur searching for a big idea or a budding business owner building your new enterprise, you are probably great at seeing things with fresh eyes. You know that people are waiting for new solutions to their recurring problems.

Maybe they are struggling with a problem for which they have still not found the right answer. Maybe your partners and suppliers have pain points dealing with your processes and systems. Or, maybe your own employees might be struggling with company practices that aren’t working. 

Whatever the situation, people need some great entrepreneur to see things with fresh eyesand bring them the help they need! 

It isn't more of the same, cheaper.

Whether it is the needs of a new customer you want to serve, or the challenges of your staff with your business model design, or the irritated supplier who wants you to get it right, you have some work to do.

But before you can solve your customers' and employees' issues and improve the situation, you need to know how they really “feel.” What are their thoughts? Their opinions? What changes do they hope to see? Which of your products or services do they wish were different? How do they solve their problems now? Do they decide to use competitors' products?

To answer all these questions, you need to go to the source. Please don't just ask them! Go Exploring!

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Change: It's Scary But Take The Plunge Anyway!

On Mar 21, 2018 6:45:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Inbound Marketing, business change, change

 

As you already know if you've read any of my blogs, I am a corporate anthropologist who launched Simon Associates Management Consultants almost two decades ago to help organizations change using the theory, methods, and tools of anthropology. Before that, I was a tenured professor and then an executive in banking and healthcare—always focused on change.

My husband, Andrew Simon (Andy), joined SAMC several years ago after many decades as a successful entrepreneur. Since he was not an anthropologist, our positioning was not going to be an easy one to fit him into. And yet, the more we thought about it, he fit the modus operandi perfectly, as I describe in a recent article I wrote for Home Business Magazine, which you can read here.

The challenge for us was: How could Andy take his expertise and apply it in ways that worked within our company’s market positioning? We knew he was a great innovator and knew how to grow businesses at all stages of their development — from start-ups and early-stage companies to mid-market companies ready to expand their scope and shape. And when you think about it, growing is all about change.

SAMC is all about helping businesses change but we realized we had to change, too.

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How To Make Your Startup A Success When You're Over 50 

On Mar 15, 2018 9:44:25 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Start-ups

Can you continue to be a valuable contributor to society after you've passed your 50th (or 60th or even 70th) birthday? Can you still be a startup entrepreneur? Yes! Because guess what? I'm doing it.

In a recent article I wrote for Home Business Magazine, I talk about the exhilaration as well as the pitfalls of re-entering the marketplace after you have retired, or if you never left it in the first place. Below are highlights from the article. To read it in full, click here.

The value of being “over 50”

1. Experience counts

Don’t discount your experiences. While you might not have skills associated with fast-moving new technologies, you do know how to deal with people. These make you very valuable. You just need to know how to sell what you know.

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Terrific Websites to Empower Successful Women Entrepreneurs

On Feb 27, 2018 8:40:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Andrea Simon, women entrepreneurs, business innovation, The Simon Initiative

 

Whether you’ve been in business a long time or are an aspiring business owner, you’ll discover how powerful and empowering it is to be supported by your fellow female entrepreneurs as you navigate your way through the complexities of entrepreneurship as a woman in today’s world.

We’ve put together a list of incredible websites with the mission to empower women entrepreneurs on their journey to success. You may be ready to grow an innovative business to reach your pinnacle of success.

The list below shows you the wide range of missions for these leaders. From the stories you will see on She Owns It to the EveryGirl that might just be you looking for the inspiration to live that great life. Take it from two life-long entrepreneurs. It is a great journey. One we love to share.

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Who Says You Have To Retire? Not Me!

On Aug 19, 2017 10:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs

Retirement...that wonderful state of being that millions of people look forward to and cannot wait to start enjoying. Not me! Although I am well past the age when I could start receiving Social Security checks, I am far from ready to retire. Why? Because life is too exciting to sit around twiddling my thumbs. Besides, I still have a lot of work to do, as I explain in a recent article I wrote for Successful Business News. (Read it here.) Is anyone out there like me?

I still like the challenges of the business world.

Yes, I still get high building revenues and generating profits. And if I can’t do it for myself, I enjoy helping someone else do it.

But if you're considering re-entering the workplace, or like me, are not ready to leave it, hold on. It's not as easy as you might think. So before plunging headlong into a new venture, pause and consider this 7-point check list:

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A Powerful Checklist For Entrepreneurial Success

On May 3, 2017 3:04:28 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, business growth strategies, Corporate Culture

I have been both a serial entrepreneur and intrapreneur for most of my life. The difference being that I have set up new businesses both inside and outside of corporations. While there are many similarities, there are also differences—namely, working with and without corporate support. And both have advantages and disadvantages. But for today, I would like to focus on the commonalities.

5 critical issues that strongly affect business success

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Entrepreneurs: Think "Business Culture" First, Not Last!

On Mar 16, 2017 11:07:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Andrea Simon, Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, Corporate Culture

 

Not long ago, we were working with an entrepreneur who had asked us to evaluate his business in the event marketing industry. While the company was highly creative and doing well, the problems seemed to stem from a recurring pattern of turnover (among the creative leaders, the controller, the new business developers) and workplace disenchantment. People came and went through a proverbial revolving door.

From our client's perspective, the challenge was how to hire the right people to support the company's rapid growth, but we could see that the culture he had created seemed to foster employee disarray. Was the problem in the business segment itself, as the CEO thought? Or was the problem the CEO himself (as we wondered)? Or, perhaps, was it the company's culture? And if so, was this a good time for changing that culture?

Could a little anthropology help build a better corporate culture?

For this particular entrepreneur, culture was an elusive "thing" that he knew he should pay attention to. However, he wasn’t sure what his culture actually was, much less why it would lead to so many people coming and going.

As we began our work with him, we could tell that the problem was a little of everything, which is what an organization's culture is all about. 

Could this business leader address his challenges if he saw them with fresh eyes?

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Can You Learn Something From a Failed Venture?

On Jul 9, 2016 12:39:42 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs

Building a successful business doesn’t always go in a straight line. Even in failure, hopefully there are some positive outcomes. Perhaps the best of these are “lessons learned”!

Case in point: A couple of years ago, I wrote an article in Becker’s Hospital Review entitled, “Sometimes You are Ahead of the Curve: 4 lessons from a Failed Price Transparency Venture” that I’d like to expand upon here.

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