Longevity in business is a relative concept: its importance is influenced by the industry and type of business. For example, certain goods or services such as banking and high-end luxury goods require long periods of activity in order to develop a sense of trust among its client base (among other things). Other industries, such as technology, often rely on shorter life cycles linked to the pace of innovation. The debate could go on but what seems reasonable to assume is that all entrepreneurs aspire to longevity in business.
Business adviser Martin Allpress from the London Small Business Centre believes that “the key to longevity in business is staying in control.” Martin’s experience of 30 years working in insolvency has also led him to the conclusion that poor management is the main reason for businesses to fail. Read the full interview here.
Other elements that contribute towards longevity in business are the focus on customer service as well as the commitment to establishing a deep level of trust in the marketplace. Both these elements require time and dedication. Focusing on the customer requires unwavering commitment too. This strategy should also include long-term planning and consistent delivery. Over time, trust builds up and satisfied customers spread the word.
McKinsey’s former managing director Ian Davis explores the importance of strategic management and innovation cycles as key points in the quest for longevity. According to Davis:
“The causes of business demise—of a failure to endure—are well documented at a general level. They include failure to address changes in market demand or competition effectively; human failings such as hubris, exhaustion, or loss of ambition; loss of operational competitiveness; and above all an inability to deal with new, often disruptive, technological innovations”.
Click here to read the full interview.
Adapting to changes in the marketplace and embracing the opportunities that it creates is key to any business that seeks longevity. Cloud-computing and multi-platform devices provide secure and easy access to systems and software that increase productivity and save time.
Sage One offers flexible accounting solutions available from multiple devices. These solutions are modular and designed to suit the needs of entrepreneurs. Embracing these solutions makes sense from a business point of view. Not only does it reduce paperwork but it also reduces costs, for example, no more need for a dedicated system. Our systems include invoicing, VAT, auto-enrolment and payroll (including RTI). Try it here.