By Todd Larsen – CEO, Limitless Technology ~ Cost Reduction Specialists
So, it’s the end of the year…
Not a bad one. Business has improved, interest rates have remained low, the market has done extremely well, and the economy is slowly recovering. Goods things all in all and you can feel a certain change coming.
And then you look at your P&L. Does it reflect this years tide? Does the bottom line look as good as it could have or should have? Was there any more that could have been done? Could more have been sold, expenses reduced, delivery made more efficient or products manufactured for less cost? Questions that have been most likely bouncing around in your mind since beginning budget planning for 2014.
Ok…so questions arise to help ensure profits next year soar. Right? Planned for everything, up turn, downturn, right purchased, right trend, right color, right size, right service model, right price….everything. No doubts, no concerns, no worries. Right?
Hmmm…most likely the perfect scenario but, not the most probable one. If you are like the majority of owners and executive leaders, you worry if all the plans are correct and will be executed in a way that ensures the most profitable growth.
So is there is one thing you can do to ensure higher profits? The answer is yes, lower costs! I am not advocating lowering service quality, or purchasing inferior goods; I am a proponent of lowering the costs of what you already are buying. Sounds simple. Just pick up the phone, call your vendors, and tell them you want the lowest price for the best product and service. Done. You call, they jump, bring you better products, lower prices and instantaneously you improve profits.
Unfortunately most likely not, but it’s not for lack or trying. However, do you know how to negotiate the best offering for a particular product or service? Are there questions in your mind like…
– Where do you start?
– What’s reasonable?
– What’s good?
– What price is right?
– What terms are best?
– Am I protected against business trends?
– Are my contracts flexible?
Quite honestly there an endless stream of questions and doubts. Ok…so how can I get all the questions answered, and moreover, improve my vendor positioning while improving my price points, flexibility and profitability? The answer is easy, but it’s not. Sorry to be ambiguous but that is the truth. In order to have the best positioning and pricing you will most likely need to look for a resource outside your company which has the skills, knowledge and experience to help you gain this positioning. Ok…now the tough question. Who do you trust? I believe when you can answer that question, you are on your way to having your problem resolved. First lets look at some points you should inspect when selecting a “trusted advisor”.
– Does the firm have inside industry experience?
– Do they have several written testimonials from other companies in your industry?
– Will they quickly provide a list of references?
– Can they show you a proven process to ensure success?
– Do they offer a money back guarantee?
When you find that trusted resource, which can provide the above answers and position you best with your vendor, the questions will go away and peace of mind will take their place. You will allow them the opportunity to help lower your costs and provide the bottom line results your were looking for at the end of this year, last year and the year before. And this way when you look at next years P&L, you’ll know you could not have done anything more in those areas to be more profitable.
Now… it’s an end of the year.