Affari sp


How to Choose the Right Business Values

Article by: Sara Pantaleo

Company values are what keep a group of people together as they work towards a common goal. These guiding principles and beliefs help them function effectively to achieve success for themselves, their customers and all stakeholders.

Company values are an excellent way for companies to communicate the core beliefs and principles that guide their day-to-day operations. A company’s identity can be built on its own unique values, or it may choose from several already established ones, such as respectfulness towards others or generosity with both time and money when needed most; these will depend largely upon what your organisation wants specifically out of its employees so they understand where you stand in regards not only how things should go at work but also why this is important.

Using your Vision Statement to Inform your Core Values

An organisation’s core values keep it oriented in the right direction. Once you have a vision statement, you’re ready to consider the guiding principles and beliefs you’ll follow to ensure your team gets to your vision’s destination.


Examples of Business Values 

Values are the building blocks of your brand. They give it its identity and can be used to create an image for yourself in society as well! Do you have a favourite retail chain? Why do they stand out from others on this scale – maybe because they always smile or perhaps because they serve you quickly. These behaviours are all likely a result of their set values.

Your brand’s values are the building blocks that give it its identity. They can be used to create an image for yourself in society and even help shape how others perceive you! Which retail chain do you enjoy going out to? Maybe because they always smile or just fast service – either way, this behaviour likely comes from their set value system.

So what are some examples of business values? Here are a few:

  • Kindness.
  • Humility.
  • We do it with a smile.
  • Fun.
  • Creativity.
  • Persistence.
  • Innovative.
Do More

How your Values Should Evolve Over Time

The values that have guided your company from the beginning are never more important than now. As you evolve, so should these guiding principles – they will sustain and guide all aspects of what it is to be a part of your organisation’s future success! Change is consistent in business, and so should your values. You can lead on tools such as employee surveys to identify precisely what core values need a refresh when it becomes apparent that a need to refresh is there. Constantly reviewing how up-to-date your values are will ensure employee engagement remains high.

How to Choose the Right Business Values Read More »

why small business fail

Why Small Businesses Fail

Studies have shown a high percentage of small businesses fail in their first year and up to 50% by year five.  70% of small businesses don’t make it past ten years.

Some Reasons why small businesses fail

1) Lack of leadership – No vision and purpose

Setting a clear vision and purpose gives you a guiding light and clear road from who you are and where you want to go.

When you don’t have a clear vision, creating the path to success is challenging, like not having a rudder.

2) Market research and niche –  do not know who the ideal client is

Not knowing who your ideal client means that you will try to attract and serve everyone.  This is like using a fishing rod to catch a shark, and you will not catch anything.  The clearer you are about your ideal client, the higher the chance of reaching the people you want to serve.

3) Poor management and planning

Setting clear strategic goals and business plans aligned with your vision will ensure you can develop precise financial forecasts around your ideal client.

Your plan sets out where you are, where you want to go and how to get there.  Ensure your goal is realistic and executable with the resources you have.

small business failure

4) Marketing

You need a clear marketing plan identifying how you are going to attract your prospective client. You should also have a marketing budget and track the return on investment for each channel to know what is working and what is not.

5) Lack of making decisions or no action

You have to get things done. But, don’t get so caught up in the process and become unable to make decisions.

Anything that prevents you from executing will lead to failure. At some point, you have to decide and move on. It’s better to make a decision and not get it perfect than not acting.

6) No commitment to innovation and continuous development

Successful business owners are constantly looking for new and better ways to serve clients and develop new opportunities.

They research and become aware of the latest trends. As a result, they are continuously innovating and finding new ways to be more efficient and increase productivity and stay abreast of changing consumer behaviour in their industry.

7) Knowing how to sell and follow-up

Lack of follow-up is a definite way to lose clients and not get referred to new ones.

Have a clear process on how you will be attracting new clients and the following up—making phone calls, responding to e-mails, or delivering a product or service.

Make sure that you track that you are delivering on time. Creating long-term customer relationships and building trust comes with knowing when to follow up.


why mall business fail

8) Poor governance and consistency

Setting up structure, systems and processes, areas of accountability are critical to achieving your strategic goals.  Some of the governance in business is to comply with laws in your industry, but small businesses in a partnership should consider strong shareholders agreements. If in a family business, a family business charter.  Other considerations are separation of duties and authority to mitigate risks and being prepared—good crisis planning to anticipate the impact of external factors, such as regulations or global trends.

Consistency is also essential. Many years ago, I learned that giving an excellent experience sometimes and a poor one sometimes creates doubt in the customers’ minds.  So, it is better to provide a great experience all the time and commit to consistency.

It takes time to attract and nurture customers to build your business. So, it is best if you were committed to tracking and acting consistently to deliver the experience that will make and keep customers.

9) Do not understand or track financial performance

Setting budgets, cashflow forecasts and financial metrics and measuring your performance is vital to know where you are so that you can make solid and informed business decisions

A small business must set sales targets and understand the reasons when you do not achieve them.

As well as revenue and profit, you should know what is happening to cash flow and forecast according to peaks and trough cycles and understand the gap between paying suppliers and receiving funds from your customers.

Other critical financial metrics are the cost of goods, employee costs, operational expenses, debtor payment days and creditor payment days.

You must work with your accountant to set these up correctly and be consistent on how and when you measure so that you can see trends developing and you can act quickly.

small business success

How can small businesses succeed

So, success in small business is not by accident, but it is by planning and design. If you are starting, ensure that you do your research, plan, set your financial and non-financial goals and what success looks like if you achieve them.  Start with good governance from the beginning.

So, if you are a successful small business, make sure you celebrate your successes and review your strategy, vision and purpose regularly to check that it resonates with the right here and now and into the future.

At the moment, one of the most significant focuses in society is climate change.  Will your small business be ready?  What research and analysis have you made in your business to ensure that you are planning for the future changes that deal with the impact of climate?

Showing leadership, setting a clear vision and strategy, strong governance and tracking performance, taking action and executing leads to small business success.  The key is not to stand still and continuously evolve in line with your business growth to meet your customer’s needs of the day.

Why Small Businesses Fail Read More »

How do I find my Purpose?

How do I find my Purpose?

How do I find my purpose in life?

Part of finding your purpose is by knowing what role you can play in changing the world.

Some of it may be the fundamentals of your belief system, some of your journey in life.   What you believe and what you want to manifest in the world.

It is essential to be realistic and set priorities, and ask yourself what you want people to say about you as they look back on your life.

One exercise is to write your eulogy and highlight your virtues.

Then determine which values are important and what is not negotiable.

How to find purpose in business?

Finding the purpose in business is very similar.

People want to engage with brands and people that are aligned to their purpose.

Defining a robust and shared purpose for your organisation is vital for business success, and it needs to be more than just building profit.

Business leaders need to have a clear vision for the future and inspire others.

Create a reason for being and to exist, a clear purpose.

Having a strong sense of purpose can define the culture you want in your organisation and guide your decisions.

Purpose sets your compass, a guiding light that gives employees a clear sense of how they should do things every day.

The purpose will make the work more meaningful and fulfil the human need to contribute to something bigger than self.

Some of the questions to ask while determining your business purpose are:

  • Why did you create your organisation?
  • What inspired your business idea?
  • What problem is your organisation trying to solve?

Simon Sinek, in his 2009 TEDx Talk, talks about the three layers to your business story, ‘The Golden Circle:

  1. The What
  2. The How, and
  3. In the centre – The Why

AffariSP Purpose Golden Circle
Golden Circle

All organisations know what they do in the products they sell or the services they offer. This is also articulated as the organisation’s Mission statement.

Only some organisations have a clear way of how they do it.  The values set them apart from their competition, but few organisations know why they do what they do.

This is because setting a purpose is not about making money. It’s about a belief and the reason why the organisation exists.

He talks about human behaviour and suggests that we talk to the part of the brain that controls feelings and behaviours by communicating from the inside out.

This creates loyalty and sells to people that believe what you believe.  The same goes for your employees. They will excel if they believe what you believe.

Having the best minds and most technical people who communicate from the outside in, you will have all the statistics and facts but not the emotion.

People do not buy what you do; they buy why you do it…. Simon Sinek

Organisations must have a clear picture of where they want to head and a future position when they succeed.  This can be articulated as the organisation’s Vision.

If everyone in the organisation is aligned to the purpose, it acts as a guiding light and the filter for setting business strategy.

You define your purpose by determining what is important to you and the organisation, and you must make it about the people you want to serve.  This cannot be about money.

Then determine the values on how you want to do it.

What are some of the factors to finding your purpose in business?

  1. Involve your team
  • It is vital that if you are working on your purpose after the business has already been established to involve your team and organise a planning meeting to ask the key questions about your business:
  1. Why do we exist?
  2. What do we do?
  3. What are we great at?
  4. Why do we stand out?
  5. What do people say about us?
  • Make sure that you are not closed-minded, listen to all the perspectives, and be realistic about your organisation. Sometimes the most valuable insight comes from the people in the front line serving your customers.
  1. Get some external perspectives – this will bring a fresh outlook and objective feedback. Organisations find it helpful to use a consultant to help facilitate the day
  2. Make sure the message is in line and resonates with your customers. Make it customer-centric.
  3. Be inspirational and aspirational. These words will become your compass and will guide your decisions in the organisation
  4. Bring people on the journey. Roll out the message to the entire organisation and public to bring it to life.  Align it to everything you do by:
    • Once you find it make it stick
    • An organisation’s true purpose is much more than a statement on a wall or website
    • Your internal behaviour and actions need to be aligned
    • Your brand and image must be aligned
    • People need to feel it, touch it and be part of it

What happens once you have found your purpose in business?

Once you have articulated your purpose, it’s time to make it a reality.  Build trust and make sure all your team is truly committed and aligned.

Culture eats strategy for breakfast…Peter Drucker

Peter Drucker says that culture is the secret sauce that keeps employees motivated and clients happy.  A clear purpose should help create clarity, and executing realistic strategies will boost productivity, performance, and bottom-line success will follow.

So, in my opinion, get your purpose right, determine your value system and set the future aspiration for success, but you must develop some realistic strategies and execute them; otherwise, it’s all a waste of time.

It all matters, Purpose, Vision, Mission, Values, strategy and execution. It’s just a matter of ensuring you set the culture first, then the priorities and then act.

So, the key is to take action and never standstill. Business success is about being able to service the customer of today. This keeps evolving, so it’s crucial that you also set a date to review and assess regularly.

Affarisp Purpose Vision Mission Values Strategy and Action Plan
Purpose, Vision, Mission, Values and Strategy Pyramid

How do I find my Purpose? Read More »

Scroll to Top