Saddened to hear of a friend purchasing a business the walk in walk out type.
All that was promised in the documents, stock control sheets etc were not as it seemed.
Missing passwords, memberships not up to date and mess on site to name a few concerns.
It’s a fact of life people who let businesses run down and or loose the plot with them just prior to the sale can damage the businesses reputation for the new owners.
How do you get over that?
1. Wipe the slate!
2. Clean up, sort the place out, put your mark on it.
3. Renew the memberships with enthusiasm; people will be excited to hear you have taken over ( and probably relieved )
4. Work out your new business hours to suit you and your customers and be consistent with your opening hours, people like to turn up to a premises to find its actually OPEN and welcoming.
5. Check out the staff, are they from the previous owners stock pile, are they doing more damage than good? (remember you are as only as good as your staff, brand and marketing will not get you over the line each week if you have rude staff and or staff who don’t have the same passion for your product.
6. Treat each customer the same, remember word of mouth is the fastest and best form of advertising, you want the old customers, the ones who walked away and those new customers to come in and notice the new management. Positive referrals spread fast!
7. Listen to each customer! Sure they may whinge about the previous people but if you listen and pick up how you can do better, its like having a review done on the business – as long as its constructive, if it’s a personal attack against the past owners their reasoning’s may go deeper than a failure of customer service.
8. It’s your business try new things, ask your best customers what they are looking for and NETWORK, join local groups and talk to other business owners. ( don’t get caught up in the gripeing or sad sacks - look for the bright and bubbly owners who are like minded.)
9. Listen to all the advice and pick out the best bits that suit you, your financial situation and your future goals for the business.
10. Have fun, running a business is hard work but enjoy it, “ better to be self employed than unemployed” Work hard, learn hard and you will reap the rewards.
Good luck I know you will do well!