How to Turn a Struggling Business Around

By Pavlo Phitidis 

Turning a struggling business around isn’t easy, but it’s not impossible. Currently, many businesses are implementing turn-around strategies to revive ailing operations, or increase their attractiveness to customers. If you’re facing a dead-end in your growing business, on The Money Show with Bruce Whitfield, we considered ways you can turn your business around:

In the news

Edgars clothing retailers financial struggles have been dominating the business headlines for a while, but the company’s undertaken two interesting initiatives that may just pay off. Partnering with Famous Brands, Edcon has opened several small cafés within some of its stores. Edcon have also partnered with an experienced technology company – Blue Label Telecoms – to launch Edgars Connect: stand-alone specialty technology stores that offer a wide range of cell phones, drones, and other gadgets.  

A turn-around strategy for your business

Getting your business back to profitability can’t happen overnight, but it is possible to do when you follow a robust plan. It happens to all businesses. Arguably, the best sports wear apparel company in the world currently, Under Armour, itself is having to undergo a turnaround. in fact, the better the brand, the more established the business, the more likely a turnaround is needed to reposition in a changing business environment.

Whether your company is struggling or not, however, you should undertake an annual review of your operations, to see where your operations can be improved, or new avenues for income generation uncovered. I’ve been working with a clothing manufacturer recently, and recommended this five-step plan:

1. Look inside your business

Start within your company and make a concerted effort to weed out any internal wrongdoings. The moment you remove anything that’s not supposed to be there, you’re ensuring that your internal systems are running effectively and efficiently, putting your business immediately ahead. With my client, our first step was to walk through the factory floor, and talk to his staff. Alarmingly, we discovered that the factory teams had never met any member of the senior management team before. As my client was looking to turn his newly purchased business around, this was key focus area for him, going forward: your team is a vital component of your company – talk to them. Just by talking to the factory floor staff, we learnt so much, and some great ideas for changing things up were shared. 

2. Look outside your business

Next, we headed out and visited this manufacturer’s customers. Customers really do hold the key to your business, and simply by listening, you’ll learn the most remarkable things about how your business is perceived and supported. Notably, when we implemented this step for my client, we also learnt that no member of the senior management team had ever visited their customers. Obtaining an objective perspective on your business is critical, no matter what. 

3. Look around your business

Your suppliers are another key component, who can also give you remarkable insight into your business. Interestingly, we discovered that there are two types of suppliers for my client – the more attentive, smaller, supplier who was eager to grow their relationship with us, and the more aloof, larger, supplier, who was quite comfortable in their relationship with us. As a result, when we reconfigured this clothing manufacturer’s business, we sought out dynamic suppliers who could offer us multi-purpose technologies that streamlined the business’ operations. 

4. Go back into your business

Once we’d learnt everything we could from suppliers and customers, we went back to the staff, to share with them our proposed turn-around strategy. It was vital that the employees of the business could see how their ideas had been considered and adopted. After all, its they who ultimately implement the strategy. But the toughest step of all will always be: finding the money.  

5. Visit the bank after visiting a funder

To implement a turn-around strategy, you need capital, and to get a capital investment, you’ll need a funder, or help from your bank. When you talk to your bank about implementing a turn-around strategy for your business, make sure you first have a funder – preferably, someone with an entrepreneurial leaning. That way, if your bank isn’t able, or willing, to provide the capital you need to turn your business around, you’ll still have an independent funding source to get started, and your bank may view your strategy a little more confidently.  

Let Aurik help you create and implement a turn-around strategy to get your business back on track. We’ll help you build your business into an asset of value. 

How to write the right kind of business plan
Business Opportunities The Money Show Business Systems Business Growth Business Plan

How to write the right kind of business plan

I’ve recently read through oodles of business plans, with a sample of ten showing me that: 4 were applying for growth funding;...

Read more

A Succession Planning Strategy for Your Business
The Money Show Succession Business Exit Business Succession

A Succession Planning Strategy for Your Business

The resignation of Robert Mugabe and the current race for power within the ANC have highlighted the importance of succession...

Read more

Critical strategies to future-proof your business
Growing business value Business Development Growing Focus Business Growth

Critical strategies to future-proof your business

Even for established businesses, it’s not easy to make sure that you will be ready for whatever might happen in the future....

Read more

How to start a business (or your career) from nothing
The Money Show Creating Time Growing Goals

How to start a business (or your career) from nothing

My recent meetings with people across the country have revealed that we have so much human potential, and yet such low morale....

Read more

Learning Resilience, to Build your Business during Tough Times
The Money Show Growing business value Building your Business Growing Accelerating Growth

Learning Resilience, to Build your Business during Tough Times

Simply reading the news headlines can be downright distressing, and government’s lack of adequate response towards corruption...

Read more

How to build your Business into an Asset of Value that is ripe for selling
Growing business value Asset of Value Sales Accelerating Growth

How to build your Business into an Asset of Value that is ripe for selling

Every business owner should be concerned about whether they will be able to sell their business for a good return when they’re...

Read more

What to do when you’ve made the wrong investment for business growth
In the News The Money Show Growing Strategy Accelerating Growth

What to do when you’ve made the wrong investment for business growth

Earlier this week, the South African Minister of Finance presented the Medium-term Budget, and the news was somewhat disheartening....

Read more

Get with the Aurik programme to ensure company growth
Growing business value Business Development Building your Business Company growth

Get with the Aurik programme to ensure company growth

Business owners are bracing themselves for tough economic times with SA’s downgrade to junk status and a gradual economic...

Read more

From a small family-owned business to an internationally recognised operation
Case Studies Business Development Family Business

From a small family-owned business to an internationally recognised operation

How did Liquid Movers quadruple their baseline turnover? The family-owned business joined the Aurik programme to grow its...

Read more

Delegate, you must: if you want to sell your business one day
Asset of Value Sales Business Exit

Delegate, you must: if you want to sell your business one day

Despite what you may think or feel, doing it on your own won’t set you on a pathway to success. You can’t build a business...

Read more

Building successful and sustainable innovative technology businesses
In the News Growing business value Asset of Value Positioning your Business

Building successful and sustainable innovative technology businesses

Aurik CEO and co-founder Pavlo Phitidis was the keynote speaker at the Innovation Bridge event in Midrand recently. With...

Read more

Think big with an Asset of Value framework
AoV Mindset Growing business value Asset of Value

Think big with an Asset of Value framework

Thinking and building big right from the start with an Asset of Value framework, enabled Atomic Oil to achieve a R60m valuation...

Read more

Business Is a Bloody Sport: Why Risk Management is Important
The Money Show Business Survival Accelerating Growth

Business Is a Bloody Sport: Why Risk Management is Important

In 2008, determined entrepreneur, Karabo Songo, established Olive Communications. I first met Karabo during the 2013 Business...

Read more

Spend more time on your business and less time in it with improved business systems
Growing business value Business Systems

Spend more time on your business and less time in it with improved business systems

We have seen a common theme emerging in our recent meetings with various entrepreneurs. As a business owner, you might be...

Read more

How effective business systems can ready your business for sale
Growing business value Growing Business Systems Business Exit Exit strategy

How effective business systems can ready your business for sale

People sell their businesses for many reasons. Fatigue from too many years in the game is one of the most common. They might...

Read more

The Asset of Value Strategy Series
AoV Mindset Pricing Growing business value Asset of Value Building your Business Finding Customers Strategy Employing people

The Asset of Value Strategy Series

Welcome to the Asset of Value Series. As part of the Nedbank Business Accelerator Campaign with 702 this year, our CEO Pavlo...

Read more

Assessing Franchise Opportunities
Business Opportunities The Money Show Growing business value Asset of Value Business Development Accelerating Growth

Assessing Franchise Opportunities

Building your business into an asset of value may include expanding through franchise opportunities. This week, on The Money...

Read more

A Business Strategy to Turn a Dreadful Year into a Success
Growing Strategy Accelerating Growth Business Strategy

A Business Strategy to Turn a Dreadful Year into a Success

This year has been tough for everyone, and there are just 12 weeks left before world of business winds up for 2017. There...

Read more

How to avoid a horror story when buying software for your business
Growing business value Asset of Value Business Development Building your Business

How to avoid a horror story when buying software for your business

Technology is both a driver and frustration for every person and business. Every business no matter what business you are...

Read more

Grow your ideas with business innovation
Growing business value Asset of Value Growing

Grow your ideas with business innovation

South Africa is lagging behind when it comes to innovation, according to a recent World Bank report. But why is innovation...

Read more

Play to your strengths – how the epic Mayweather-McGregor fight can take your business to the next level
The Money Show Growing business value Building your Business Growing

Play to your strengths – how the epic Mayweather-McGregor fight can take your business to the next level

Undefeated welterweight world champion Floyd Mayweather Jnr met mixed martial arts world champion Conor McGregor in Las Vegas...

Read more

Part 2: How to protect your growing business from big business theft
In the News The Money Show Business Development Building your Business Positioning your Business

Part 2: How to protect your growing business from big business theft

The tender trap   After the launch of the BLSA, and the commitments made by big business to entrepreneurs, it sparked...

Read more

Part 1: Big business commitments to small business with the launch of the BLSA
Business Opportunities The Money Show Building your Business Inspiration

Part 1: Big business commitments to small business with the launch of the BLSA

I attended the launch of Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) – which is headed by former Shell CEO Bonang Mohale – last...

Read more

ANN7 sale should have entrepreneurs asking themselves what their business is worth
AoV Mindset The Money Show Sales Business Exit

ANN7 sale should have entrepreneurs asking themselves what their business is worth

On Monday, 21 August, we spoke to Bruce Whitfield on The Money Show on Radio 702 and Cape Talk of that day’s R450 million...

Read more