You know, the one where he says, “If you have more than one car jacked up in your front yard, you might be a redneck.”
Foxworthy got rich with this comedic routine. And you can benefit from this cause-and-effect logic too, if you apply it to your small business.
Let’s use Foxworthy’s shtick to deliver and emphasize a few small business survival punch lines. But in this application, if you resemble too many of these one-liners, not only will you not get rich, your business might not make it.
· If the gloom-and-doom you’re hearing in the media has you holed-up inside the four walls of your business instead of getting out into the marketplace where customers are buying, you might not make it. Listen more to customers, and less to the media.
· If your budget cuts included wiping out your marketing plan, you might not make it. Make appropriate adjustments to your marketing plan, but don’t wipe out the budget.
· If you don’t have a website, you might not make it. If you have a phone number, you MUST have a website.
· If you don’t have a mobile website, you might not make it. More prospects want to reach you on their smartphone - make it easy for them with a mobile site.
· If you’re a retail business and you don’t have a local search strategy, you might not make it. Turn over every rock for business by maximizing your mobile search presence.
· If you sell to businesses and are still making cold calls, you might not make it. Business prospects expect you to get to know them, not drop in on them.
· If you’re spending more time worrying about what the competition is doing instead of asking customers what they want, you might not make it. Followers worry about the competition - leaders stay close to customers.
· If you don’t know what your monthly expenses are – every month, you might not make it. Don’t you know how much it takes to run your household every month?
· If you don’t know how much gross profit your operation must produce every month in order to cover expenses, you might not make it. You wouldn’t drive down a dark road without turning on your headlights, would you?
· If you don’t manage accounts receivable collections so there is enough cash to cover your current obligations, like payroll, you might not make it. It’s possible to operate without making a profit for a long time, but you can only operate without cash until your next payroll.
· If you haven’t prepared for customers on your accounts receivable list to take longer to pay over the next few months, you might not make it. You have to expect your business customers to have a tight cash picture too - have a Plan B for cash.
· If you haven’t developed a close relationship with a bank that makes loan decisions locally, you might not make it. For long-term survival, every small business must have a relationship with an independent community bank.
· If you aren’t managing cash flow with a 12-month cash flow projection – preferably electronically, like an Excel file – so you know the months you’ll need extra cash before you get there, you might not make it. I don’t know how any small business can operate safely without managing cash with a 12-month projection. It’s my most important management tool.
· It’s okay to fall in love with what you do, but if you fall in love with how you do it, you might not make it. What you sell may never go out of style, but how customers want to buy it, take delivery of it, and sue it is changing all the time.
Who knew Jeff Foxworthy could be so useful?
If you want to hear more about small business lessons from Jeff Foxworthy, click on the links below to download or listen.