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Darren Wingfield

Darren Wingfield

Commercial Manager

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The top 6 tips to success for a professional services business

Posted on 24/12/19  |  3 Minutes
Professional Service business owner talking to their accountant

Starting up a professional service business can feel like there is a lot of activity in the very early days to get established and develop the relationships that will take you forward. With so many potential uses for your valuable time, it can be difficult to know where to focus to get the best results. We have been supporting startup businesses to find their feet and head on the right tracks. Here are our top 6 tips to success for a professional services business –

Professional Services poster with individuals running in background

6 – Prioritise the big wins 

It can feel productive to have conversations with a large number of people as you hope to win their business. These will range from the large to the small. And at first, it can feel like they are all important contacts to be nurtured. But with a limit on the amount of time you have, there is the need to prioritise the big wins for your startup professional services business. The big wins might be important for more than one reason –

  • Those that will transform your business with one contract
  • Those that interest you the most
  • Contracts that look easier to obtain

Whatever it is you decide, then priorities these as the place to spend most of your time and money.

5 – Act when you say you will

If there are actions you need to take, then putting them off until later can cause them to never happen. Don’t get sucked into working only on urgent matters. But think about how you can free the time up straight away to deal with those important tasks – those that will make the biggest difference to your business.

Selling is a vital part of any startup business, but we often put this off to focus on admin or getting the latest marketing material just right. Don’t think that you can grow a successful professional services business without some emphasis on sales.

4 – Outsourcing helps you focus 

Professional Services wordmap

There are some elements of your business that are best left to the professionals. Getting someone else to deal with these tasks is cost-effective and lets you concentrate on developing your team or delighting your customers.

At Harlands, we use our expertise to help you understand the financials of your business and put effective forecasts in place to take it to the next level. We give you the support you need to get your business off the ground.

3 – Don’t forget yourself

Starting a new business often means long hours. You must have a lot of energy and time for customers and your team to develop the business and look forward. But you shouldn’t lose yourself in all of this.

Personal development is vital to keep you on top of things and find new ways of working. Thinking about your business strategically means being exposed to new ideas and techniques. Make sure you find time in your week to read, study and think about your own personal progress.

2 – Feed yourself daily 

At some point of every day, you should look for the next sale. This might be prospecting calls, follow ups or another form of sales progression. You might feel really busy now, but the next quiet patch will be right around the corner. So, don’t stop those sales calls because they are the lifeblood of your business in the next few weeks and months.

Feeding yourself with new appointments every day means that you are cultivating relationships for the future of your business. Don’t stop this at any time because the sales will dry up and it will be much harder to start all over again.

Selection of cogs with different business symbols inside

1 – Networking is key

Building a network of people is vital for a professional services business, as you look to build. Getting out there and meeting people at networking events will really help you to connect with people and talk about their needs. Don’t go there with the view that you are going to sell, sell, sell as this approach rarely works, but always try to make connections with people and bring your business cards with you.

Building a startup professional services business can feel like you don’t know where to turn at times. Having a plan for how you will use your time will help you to see the wood from the trees. Don’t think that you have to do this alone.