Every business needs to build their profitability line to become a sustainable business. If I could sit down with a group of business owners and ask them, “Tell me one thing that keeps you up at night as you look to grow your company?” Nine times out of 10 when I ask this question, I get the same answer, “Cash flow.”

When your cash dries up so does your business, as well as your independence. If you rely on a third-party for a cash injection, you’re always subject to them. Banks, lenders, investors, all want to see how strong your profitability is, and what processes you have in place to grow it.

The right process can help you make great progress. Good leadership and strategic thinking with clear defined values and processes will keep you on track as you launch or grow a business.

However, keep this process moving forward and not only will you be able to launch or grow a business, but you will be able to build a sustainable business.

History is full of companies that have come and gone.

I have seen statistics that suggest only 50% of companies survive the first three years.

Where there can be many reasons for this, there’s often a theme for this. Again, statistics show that lack of cash flow is highlighted as the number one reason.

As a business development coach and trainer working with business owners to enhance their team engagement, performance, productivity and profitability, I often see areas of missed opportunities.

Missed opportunities can lead to incalculable losses.

Strategic questions to customers, guests and clients, can often lead to an enhanced customer experience, delivering a higher return.

Having taught in hotels and observing restaurants and coffee shops, I see good service, but often not the very best. A so-called good practice is not always the very best practice, which leads to a lesser customer experience and less income.

The cost of not training your team to deliver the very best can lead to a financial disaster.

Strategic leadership questions to ask yourself:Building a sustainable business

  1. Review and take relevant action on your best practice. Is your best practice – your very best practice?
  2. What processes do you have in place to listen, learn and respond to client feedback?
  3. Which areas of your business are hemorrhaging cash flow the most and why?
  4. Which areas of your business are the most profitable and why?

I’m all for customer, client guest-centric service, but I also know if there is no profit in a business year after year, you’ll soon not be able to provide the excellence and service you desire to.

So, take relevant action now, be bold, challenge processes and best practices. Listen to your market place and ensure you continue to remain relevant as you build a sustainable business.