Early in my banking career I was invited to meet with a business owner who expressed interest in moving his company’s banking relationship to Univest. I met with the owner in his office and it quickly became clear the business was struggling and the incumbent bank was encouraging him to move his business to a new financial institution. Business revenue was in steady decline and several key employees had left over the years, both of which were due to new competition in the market. I asked why they were experiencing these trends and what steps were being taken to reverse them. I will never forget the answer: “I don’t know. The market has changed, I haven’t.”
Change is constant. The velocity of change continues to increase as technology evolves and our world gets smaller and smaller. A good example of this is the volatility we’re experiencing in the financial markets as we start 2016. The wild swings in the stock market, the historically low price of oil and the strong dollar all directly or indirectly impact our local businesses and consumers.
As a business owner, it is important to change or change will be forced upon you – and often not in your favor. Do not be satisfied with the status quo. Knowing how and when to change is done by watching and listening. Here are some tips to make sure you stay ahead:
- Stay current on local and world events
- Utilize a dashboard to monitor key internal and external business statistics
- Actively participate in industry specific associations
- Stay close to your key customers
- Engage professional advisors
- Consider creating an advisory board
- Seek feedback from key employees
At the end of the day, change doesn’t happen unless you take action. Make it happen!
As your business grows and changes you should make sure the right financial tools are in place to succeed. It is important to seek advice from a full team of financial, tax and legal advisors to make sure you are charting the right course. Not sure where to start? Give us a call to get the conversation started. 215.703.5464.
Univest Bank and Trust Co. is Member FDIC, Equal Opportunity and SBA Preferred Lender.