When starting a business, the owner or director will have some business expectations. The first expectation will be, the business will be a success. Secondly, there will be financial rewards and personal achievement. Very few people start a new business expecting it to fail or have limited financial reward. The new business owner will be looking forward to creating fantastic relationships with both clients and suppliers. A relationship that will ensure:
- Their clients will value their product or service
- Clients will become an advocate for their business
- Invoices paid on time and in full
- Clients will be courteous and respectful
- Suppliers will provide value for money
- Ordered goods are delivered
- Suppliers will not supply faulty goods
- Discounts offered to loyal clients
When business expectations do not get fulfilled, it leads to the owner of the business feel dissatisfied, despondent and exasperated. This situation will be alleviated with clear objectives at the beginning of the relationship. Expectations contained within the terms and conditions before work commences.
Each party should be fully aware of what the terms and conditions are and if there are any break clauses. If your start-up business does not have any terms or conditions, you should contact a solicitor immediately to have them drafted in your favour.
For Suppliers, a copy of their terms and condition is always advisable. It is imperative that you read and understand the terms and conditions you are agreeing. They will set out the terms of delivery of goods, payment terms and faulty goods. If conditions are too stringent for your company, is it permitted to request a change to the terms. Obviously, the supplier may refuse. However, you will not know unless you try.
This may also be a good time to call your local Virtual Assistant who can assist with client retention and supplier opportunities. Your Virtual Assistant can contact you clients to investigate the reason that they are unhappy and help rectify the situation. Your VA can also communicate with the supplier to explore issues relating to a product. This leaves you free to continue to promote your products or services?
Personal Reflection from a Virtual Assistant
I attended a Chocolate Making Course in Dorset and hoped the course would teach me the art of chocolate decorating. I wanted the technical aspects of chocolate. Although this was a leisure activity for me, I was still willing to learn and develop as a chocolatier.
The course was disappointing and did meet my expectations. It was not a professional course for armatures. The course also finished over an hour earlier than advertised as the supplies ran out.
My expectations were too high. I relied on the advertising literature. In hindsight, it would have been useful to know the age the course was targeting and the specifics of what it was covering.
Conclusion – Business Expectations
Damage to business expectations can happen. It is, therefore, important to mitigate this damage. You need to ask those important questions at the beginning of a working relationship. Only then are you likely to get the results you require? Additionally, this will ensure you do not waste valuable time, resource and money for your business. You may also like to utilise some of the vast numbers of management tools available. These tools will help to understand clearly what your goals and objectives are:
• The Fishbone Diagram AKA Cause & Effect Diagram