If the pandemic has taught us one thing, it is that learning and adapting to change are critical skills for resilient and successful businesses.
While we can’t see into the future, there are steps that you can take. The development of financial and digital literacy skills are two key areas where adept business owners can improve their chances of success. These skills will ensure your business is ready to seize opportunities over the next decade.
A good understanding of your numbers and how technology can transform business operations, engagement and customer service will help future-proof your business.
Financial literacy – understanding your numbers
People often start a business because they are following their passion. Yet it is the numbers that tell the true story of a business. A good grasp of how the numbers stack up or ‘financial literacy’ is essential. Over time, you can improve your financial literacy by reviewing your business figures and financial strategy, utilising technology, and obtaining business advice from a specialist in this area. Realise Business Advisors can help you here.
A thorough knowledge of your profit and loss, expenses, cashflow or Cost of Goods Sold, as well as your most profitable products or clients, will be critical to understanding how your business is faring.
Your business numbers are also linked to your strategy and vision for the future. Once you understand your numbers, you can then decide whether to adjust or invest to save your business earnings or put them back into the business to make it more profitable.
Accounting technology can empower your decision making. Cloud accounting platforms like Xero, QuickBooks or MYOB make it easier to keep track of the numbers in your business, allowing you to access a wide variety of financial information in real-time.
Realise Business advisors also work in partnership with Parramatta businesses, using digital modelling tools that measure different aspects of the business. For example, by teaching business owners to use café modelling software, Realise Business advisors have helped the owners to master the Cost of Goods Sold and related net profits for the operation. The owners learn enough from Realise Business sessions to self-manage in the future.
Developing financial skills and drawing on the power of technology will empower you to make the most of future opportunities.
Digital Literacy – knowing and using the power of technology
The term ‘digital literacy’ means having the skills you need to live and operate a business in a society where communication and information are increasingly accessed through mobile devices, social media and internet platforms.
Understanding what this means for your business involves being open to change. As the rate of digital innovation increases, we can only imagine what businesses will look like in the future and how customers will want to engage with them.
Digital innovation in your business can have multiple benefits, here are just a few:
- improve efficiency
- optimise workflows and planning
- attract more customers at a lower cost
- take online bookings
- showcase your products and services on social media
- sell your goods or services online via your website
- collect data for greater insights.
Embracing digital innovation will equip you with the skills and tools to attract the customer of the future and take advantage of ground-breaking innovations like AI, virtual reality and the metaverse.
The metaverse is a virtual community that is already attracting investment as large businesses like Facebook (now re-branded as Meta), Microsoft, Disney, and Shopify stake their claim in this new digital environment.
There are some colourful examples of the metaverse already impacting customer sales. Big make-up brands like Maybelline are offering Virtual Makeup try-on technology that allows you to try on a new lipstick or eyeshadow virtually before you buy. Also, Amazon Salon in London allows shoppers to experiment with virtual hair colours using augmented reality before they have their hair cut and coloured.
The best way to keep up with change and boost your financial and digital literacy is to work alongside expert advisors who specialise in marketing and finance. Realise Business advisors are up to date with the latest techniques and trends, but more importantly, they have an excellent track record of working with Parramatta businesses to achieve success in these areas.