One of the fatal flaws that security guard company owners and managers make is working so much IN their businesses that they don’t work ON their businesses. Being so engrossed in putting out the small fires that you face daily sometimes keeps you from paying attention to the signs that your company is in trouble. So take a moment to review this list to see if any of these signs ring true for you.
Please note that the list that we compiled focuses on the non-financial warning signs. I assumed that the financial signs are pretty obvious (i.e. not paying bills on time, not making a profit, etc), while the non-financial signs can be a little more obscure. Although no one sign on the list guarantees that you are headed for disaster, the more that ring true the more concerned you should be.
Personal Signs That Your Company Is In Trouble
1. You’re not in love with what you do. If you love what you’re doing , you are more likely to spend the time doing the things that will make you successful. But if you aren’t in love, the long hours that you devote to trying to be successful will lead to burn out and eventually failure.
2. You don’t take criticism well. If you are not capable of taking criticism you may be missing huge opportunities to improve your business. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean that you have to do everything that people tell you, but you should at least listen. Good advice is worth its weight in gold.
3. You don’t delegate. Attempting to do it all yourself limits the the true potential of your company. You should be actively looking for opportunities to delegate tasks to employees who are better at doing them than you.
4. You don’t take risks. In order to be successful sometimes you have to be willing to take a risk and open yourself up to failure. If you are overly afraid of making mistakes, you run the risk of becoming so fixated on not failing that your security business ceases to grow. Taking risks is one of the necessary elements for keeping your company ahead of the curve.
Customer Related Signs That Your Company Is In Trouble
5. You are not continuously communicating with your customers. Failure to understand your customers’ perceptions of your services can be a death knell for your company. Communicating with your customers about the service and support that they are receiving will help you see signs that your company is in trouble.
6. Your customers are not recommending you. The best form of advertising is and will always be word of mouth marketing by your current customers. If your customers are not recommending you to their colleagues chances are you probably aren’t doing that great of a job. Being able to purchase ads is great, but having customers speaking on your behalf is what really fuels a company’s growth.
7. There is no plan for client retention. Most companies spend a lot of time and energy finding, qualifying, and closing new business. From my perspective as a sales professional that is GREAT! But if you don’t have a formal plan to retain them other than making sure their posts are filled, you may be losing more customers than you should.
8. Your customers aren’t willing to meet. If your clients are not willing to meet with you it could be a sign that your company is in trouble. When customers are frustrated with your service, or don’t think that meeting with you is a valuable use of their time, you may start getting the cold shoulder. Sometimes what your client aren’t saying can be just as telling as what they have said.
Cultural Signs That Your Company Is In Trouble
9. You can hear a pin drop. If you walk the halls of your office and there is no sign of liveliness or energy it might be a sign of low employee morale. Low employee morale can lead to poor productivity, absenteeism, and unnecessarily high turnover. Low employee morale can also cause a toxic environment that can affect other parts of your business.
10. You have an “Anti-Fan” club. When your company culture does not produce fulfilled and engaged employees, the employees become less likely to contribute to solutions. It becomes easy for them to point out every flaw within the company which then results in loss of productivity and poor service.
11. There is not a culture of “Yes”. When employees are quick to say “No” to colleagues and customers, it becomes impossible to move your company in a positive direction. Having a “No” attitude shows negativity and negativity breeds negative outcomes. Fortunately, the same is true for positivity.
Organizational Signs That Your Company Is In Trouble
12. You continue to make the same mistakes. As I have discussed before, there is absolutely nothing wrong with making mistakes. Mistakes and failure offer you and your employees an opportunity to learn. But repeatedly making the same mistakes means that there is a HUGE disconnect within your organization and is one of the main signs that your company is in trouble.
13. Failure to take action. If you and your colleagues or employees find yourselves in meeting after meeting with nothing getting done, you are wasting valuable time and resources. This lack of action may be a sign of fear or lack of delegated authority.
14. There seems to be a lack of direction or goals. When you or your employees are not sure what you should be doing from week to week it is a sign of poor leadership. When no one is sure of the direction that you are going people will end up rowing in opposite directions.
15. Your company has become complacent. The classic case of a company embracing complacency was Kodak. When is the last time you bought an instant camera? Complacency may very well be the precondition for the beginning of all failures. Companies must continue to innovate and raise the bar. If you find yourself talking to your customers and colleagues about the same topics and issues year after year it is time to breathe some new life into your company. Innovation has always been a catalyst for increases in productivity and business growth.
Are there other signs that you look for when you are trying to determine the health and future of your company? If so please share them below.
By Courtney Sparkman