The human mind operates in terms of constraints. We use constraints as a way of making sense of the world around us. They help us to categorize information so that we can process it more efficiently. Unfortunately, this often provides a false view of reality. This can be especially true when you’re faced with having to maximize business resources.
As a business owner, it’s easy to see constraints as limitations. When you only have a small amount of resources, you figure that you only have minimal opportunities for growth. This, however, isn’t necessarily true.
4 Ways You Can Maximize Your Business Resources
Running a small business is all about learning to maximize business resources. It’s about doing more with less. By heeding the following advice, you can thrive within your constraints.
1. Invest in Machine Learning
When you don’t have a ton of resources, you have to put your money to work for you. That means investing in solutions that continue to add value. It means avoiding ones that rapidly depreciate. Machine learning technology falls into the former category.
As PinnacleART explains, “Machine learning fundamentally encompasses the capability of advanced software to recognize patterns, and then begins to learn from those patterns—meaning you are not manually programming the algorithm, telling the software what to look for in order to trigger an appropriate response.”
Machine learning is the very definition of resource maximization. You invest something on the front end and it grows into something bigger and more valuable over time.
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2. Aim for Client Retention over Acquisition
“Many enterprises still operate under the mentality that ‘bigger is better’ and expansion is the only way to grow, but it’s simply not true,” entrepreneur Lena Elkins writes. “It’s proven that existing business relationships with reoccurring customers have a significantly greater profit potential than new customers, yet many businesses still continue to chase unknown territory.”
Instead of investing a ton of your time and money into growing your client base, be on the lookout for opportunities to upsell your existing clients. This will save you a ton of resources over the long haul.
3. Prioritize Tasks
As a business owner, you have plenty of responsibilities and tasks on your plate. Perhaps it’s true that they all need to get done eventually. However, the key is to get better at prioritizing which tasks need to be completed first (and using which resources).
“Prioritization really helps you manage to do more with less because you are doing the right things,” Ten Six Consulting explains. “Clear priorities let the team focus on what is really important and not get side-tracked on to projects that sound urgent but that really don’t contribute to the company’s strategic goals.”
4. Learn When to Say No
When you have limited resources, you can’t afford to say yes to every request. In fact, you have to become good at saying no.
Learning to say no is challenging for people who want to be helpful. However, it’s a skill you need to master if you’re going to stand any chance of maximizing the limited resources you have at your disposal.
Do More with Less
It’s a fallacy that the business with the greatest amount of resources always outperforms the business with fewer resources. Study the history of your industry and you’ll see multiple instances where a small business with minimal resources entered the industry and overtook a larger competitor through creativity, innovation, and resource maximization.
While it helps to have resources on hand, it’s not necessary. What’s important is that you leverage the resources you do have. In other words, you need to learn to focus on doing more with less. In most cases, learning to maximize business resources sparks greater innovation. It will help you find new opportunities that you otherwise wouldn’t have stumbled upon.