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When to Say No to Business Opportunities

When you have decided on a business strategy make sure that you have the discipline to create the space for it to succeed. This can mean saying ‘No’ to business that is not part of your core offering.  If you find yourself ‘hedging your bets’ you need to question your commitment to the strategy, or maybe you need to reflect further on the strategy itself.

When to Say No to Business Opportunities

It is easy for small businesses to succumb to a mindset of ‘business is hard to come by’ and to be inclined to accept every new business opportunity. This is a particular temptation for growing businesses with spare capacity. But before taking on ‘opportunities’ that are outside your core market positioning ask:

1. How does this impact on your operational model?
Say ‘No’ if it will put strain on your ability to meet the needs of your core customer base. Introducing complications into your service and delivery model, can lead to problems down the line.

2. How will  the opportunity impact on your pricing strategy?
Say ‘No’ if it cheapens your offering or compromises your overall pricing strategy.

3. How will it impact on market perception of the business?
You may have worked hard to differentiate yourself and create a unique selling proposition. You don’t want to undo this good work by confusing the market as to what you stand for.

So unless your strategy is build around being ‘all things to all men’ have the courage to say ‘No’, when an opportunity does not fit with your market positioning.

Likewise, when considering the introduction of a new product/service consider how the new offering will ‘sit’ with the existing range. Should an existing product or service be retired to make way for the new in the interests of keeping your offering simple and focused ?

If some of the above feels like putting ‘all your eggs in one basket’ maybe that’s what’s required if the ‘one basket’ requires all your energy, resources and focus to be successful.

One Response to When to Say No to Business Opportunities

  1. Trudy Arthurs June 20, 2013 at 3:05 pm #

    I completely agree with this great advice. Too often we get caught in the ‘what if’ fear-scented question, and ignore our strengths, and the value they bring to our best core clients. Mind you, it took me a loooooong time to let this one fully in! Thx Brian.

    Trudy Arthurs
    Dancing Leopards Executive Development

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