“Daddy, I know how we get money.” Said my 3 year old son in his very deep voice.
“How?” I asked.
“We go to the ATM” he said.
Well my son was right. Prior to everything being cards and phones it was important to have cash and I would get my cash at an ATM at my bank. Often this was on the way to a family dinner and clearly my son was watching and absorbing. Building a smooth operating business improves value which is an important component of any succession or exit plan.
The ATM is really a lot like a business. You use a process to obtain money. If the process fails you are very, very disappointed. Like your business, consistency creates comfort and reduces business risk.
How can you turn your business or practice into a reliable ATM and increase your practice value?
- Hire great people and train them and grow them.
- Work on your business systems. “A great system is when ordinary people get extraordinary results every time.”
- Develop tracking systems for key metrics of your practice and things like collections that are important but easy to ignore.
- The less your practice needs YOU the more valuable it is and the less likely you are to feel you “need to get out.”
- Implement how you can make your practice more “Sticky.” Sticky means your clients stick around. Repeating work like taxes, integrations that simplifying things for your clients but creating hassles to move (think about how you bank may have done this to you?) Service contracts so you are the first call, etc.
- Investigate the profitability of your different products and services. Sell more of the high margin ones.
- Develop a marketing and sales system that is independent of any one person. Which would you rather own? A fast food restaurant with no customer alliance to staff or a restaurant where everyone comes because of a wonderful Maître D’?
Ways to make your practice run consistently like a quality ATM are endless. Change and technology make sure this is a job that is never complete. But, when you build your practice to run like an ATM you will have more fun running it and you will increase its value enhancing your succession and exit plan.