How small businesses can rebound from a bad 2011

Posted by Justin Hesser on January 19, 2012

Some small businesses may have had a rough year in 2011, and with the new year still in its infancy, there's still time to plan for 2012. The SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard, results of a survey taken by 35,000 small businesses, showed that 63 percent of the respondents had positive outlooks on 2012.

Businesses that had an unsettling 2011 may first want to take a good look at their employees. Glen Blickenstaff, the CEO of The Iron Door company, wrote a piece for with some suggestions to turn around a faltering business.

He wrote that "dead-weight employees" need to be weeded out. Blickenstaff proposed that business owners give employees a 24-hour window to submit a response about what they think about their job and what they believe the organization's main three objectives are. If they miss the deadline, Blickenstaff said they are expendable.

He went on to explain that the next move should be a thorough evaluation of the operation based on suggestions from employees. Blickenstaff wrote that management should set targets for their staff to meet based on the solutions eventually decided on. Positive reinforcement for meeting these goals is good, but it's crucial to demand that they continue to be met.

"You are pushing a rock uphill, as the momentum starts and everyone sees progress you need to double your efforts to keep it moving," he wrote. "If you stop you will lose precious time and momentum."

If your small business didn't exactly produce the results you were anticipating, another route to a more productive 2012 is rethinking operation processes and their efficiency. Sifting through unorganized and messy databases, for instance, can take a lot of unnecessary time if a business isn't using the right software. Software developing companies can actually build database software customized for specific purposes and operations. Consult a FileMaker developer if you think your business could benefit from custom software.