How to create a successful business that booms

successful business


Emma Wimhurst knows about running a successful business. A mumpreneur, she set up her own successful cosmetics company and now gives business advice to many companies around the UK. Here she details what it takes for a business to be successful, even in a recession.

The recession is simply an excuse for bad business management. Businesses which are run properly will continue to perform well and out-perform the market place regardless of the global economic situation. Some of you may wonder how I can possible say this with huge corporations, well known brands, going out of business: Woolworths as an example. Well, I believe that I can. Regardless of the global economic situation, it is important to have your finger on the pulse of all areas of your business and I wonder, just how much information was swept under the carpet at Board Meetings at the fallen companies, who did or didn’t ask the right questions?

As a supplier to BHS of own-label colour cosmetics gift sets (Diva Cosmetics Ltd), we were often told by the Buyers that they had to present to the owner, Philip Green, on a regular basis and that he would question them in detail about each individual line and its potential profit. I am sure that BHS will survive and indeed thrive in this recession – from the very top down, attention is being paid to the detail, detail, detail.

Paying attention to the detail is absolutely crucial and, unless you can do this, your business will not survive regardless of the economic climate. With one in six businesses now majority-owned by women compared to less than one in ten, three years ago, it is good news indeed.  Women are renowned for their ability to multi-task and it is these skills and paying attention to the detail which will guarantee success and standout from other businesses.

Seven key areas

It is not a question of putting all of your focus and attention on one particular area – something which is so often advocated by business experts. It is essential, indeed VITAL, to have a finger on the pulse in the many areas which affect your business, not just one ……I believe that there are 7 key areas which require total attention, utmost clarity and regular review.

I refer to these as Disciplines – they are not rules because we all know that rules are for rebelling against and are made to be broken. They certainly are guidelines and they are also firmly held principles – but principles are optional and guidelines are flexible.

They will let you off the hook on a bad day.  Disciplines, on the other hand, become fixed in routine, they impact on who you are, and become a practical habit. Disciplines will help you to stay on track when the going gets tough. They become an intrinsic part of the way you think, the way you act, the way you lead and the way you conduct your business. When you apply self-discipline to your management style and business disciplines to your management structure, you can’t help but improve your company’s profitability and performance.

Business Disciplines 1-4, as detailed in my new book published today, BOOM! 7 Disciplines to CONTROL, GROW and ADD IMPACT to Your Business (Diva Publishing), will help you to plan and achieve whatever you want and take you wherever your ambition leads you. They are the building blocks of business, without which you will be unable to survive. They are the practical disciplines that affect the systems and processes that you implement within your company.

Let’s take a brief look at them:

  1. Business Strategy. Do you have 2020 vision? By which I mean do you know where your business will be in one year, five years or in the year 2020? Every business needs a strategic plan – a vision statement to identify your company’s goals;  to provide a framework for making commercial decisions and to aid with business planning.  It needs to motivate and inform and be concise – no more than 50 words.
  2. Business Planning.  Every business also needs a business plan. When you know where you are heading, you need to plan on how you are going to get there.  A business plan is an important review document and provides a benchmark against which to assess and review ongoing results and assess how each business area is performing against forecast. As the owner/manager, it is especially important because it will keep you focused on your goals and steer you in the right direction.
  3. Marketing Management. Marketing is so important for your business – not just the tactics you employ but management of the outcomes will ensure you keep a close eye on the results you are achieving and the benefits to your business.
  4. Practical Finance. So many business owners relinquish control of the finances and this approach is simply not good enough. Never try to do without an accountant. It is false economy and don’t adopt a head-in-the-sand approach to money. As an owner/manager, it is crucial that you know what state your finance is in and that you know how it will look in the weeks/months ahead. Business Disciplines 5 -7 are three essential soft skills that focus on aspects of business management that are harder to control – the people-related areas. They are also the areas that are likely to provide the greatest personal satisfaction when you get them right. These disciplines will help you to communicate, motivate and improve the results of your team, your customers and yourself.
  5. Team Building. Your people are your most valuable business resource and building a strong team is what really puts a BOOM! into your business.
  6. Customer Commitment. Your business begins and ends with customer commitment. It is important to be totally tuned into your customer’s needs, because with them, you would have no business.
  7. Personal Development. This discipline will determine your ultimate success. The success of every business begins and ends with the attitude and drive of the person at the top.

By focussing on these 7 areas within your business, you will become an expert on your business, and with this level of knowledge comes a huge amount of power as well as the profit-making potential. You will not only know that decisions need to be taken, but you will also be aware of the areas which require your greatest attention. By being on top of this level of your detail, your business will not simply survive during these economic times, it will thrive and grow. Make it your responsibility to ensure that your business BOOMS!

Emma Wimhurst is a motivational speaker, business turnaround expert, entrepreneur  who has been widely featured in the media and has appeared on BBC’s Beat The Boss. She is author of BOOM! 7 Disciplines to CONTROL, GROW and ADD IMPACT to Your Business, Diva Publishing, £14.99, published today 12th November 2009.  Emma will be presenting at everywoman, start ups live/London and Jo Cameron’s WOW Conference all in November. To order BOOM! go to Read more about Emma and her mentoring services at

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