After over 11 years of running a successful Graphic / Web Design business with nine staff in two locations (Torquay and Ballarat). A major back injury and some client marketing cut backs had left my business enduring the worst financial year of its existence.  This was a new experience for me, I had become accustomed to the business growing bigger each year. Some tough decisions had to made and I realised my business was not as strong as it could be.

For instance could I step away from my business for four weeks and would it not miss a beat? No was the short answer. I needed to change how my business was run and I needed help to achieve this, in step Hugh Bowman.  After speaking to Hugh over a lunch one day I was immediately taken by his understanding of business and his interest in mine. I told him what my business was going through and he starting listing areas we could look at as a priority.

One of these areas was setting up Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for all my designers. The idea being instead of getting a feel for how productive my designers were, we should track it more closely to ascertain how effective and productive each designer was. I spent time explaining to my staff what I had learnt from Hugh and why it was important for all of us as a team to meet our KPIs, this was met with mixed reactions, not surprisingly the more positive reactions came from my most productive staff with nothing to hide.

Six months after hiring Hugh my business was back achieving the profits I have always had, and more importantly we have achieved this with our biggest client’s marketing budget still 75% less than normal. To any business owner, here is my recommendation, you can always learn more even if you think you already know everything. Get Hugh to do a business health check on your business and see if you can make the same profit with half the work.  Mine is a work in progress but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, where nine months ago all I could see was darkness.

PS. The Action Growth 90 day Planning sessions are awesome and the Richsales seminar was the best sales seminar I have even seen.

Rodney Brown

Managing Director – Brown Ink Design

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