At the end of February, many people are looking forward to the first burst of spring, with buds appearing, sunshine warming frigid corners and the overall renewal the season can bring. Gardeners often take action at this time to prepare for spring planting. And an important first step is to clear out weeds and debris.
Although 2022 is still new, payments professionals can act now to eliminate weeds and debris that might be sprouting or piling up in our businesses, catch them before they loom large, and prepare for prosperity as the year proceeds.
Weeds and debris can crop up anywhere in a business at any time, and just like weeds in a garden, their impact can be insignificant at first but turn into huge problems over time. Some vulnerable areas that come to mind are technology and network problems, steps omitted or corners cut, dissatisfied customers, plans needing revision, underperforming people, insufficient partner and employee support, and important goals neglected or completely dropped.
Take technology, for example. To stay competitive today, an enterprise must keep its technology up to date. In the payments industry that means not only the hardware, software, and cloud and network access you provide customers, but also all of your in-house systems. If a network performs slowly or experiences noticeable downtimes, and nothing is done to get to the root of the problem, this can hinder a business significantly, especially if the problem is allowed to continue.
When it comes to omitting steps or cutting corners, what if you have a terrific CRM system, but your company is lax about ensuring people enter data? That could mean the next time a colleague is interacting with a merchant whose information wasn't recorded, they will be missing key information that, if provided, could have led to successful upselling or to solving a problem quickly.
Such omissions and corner cutting can lead to dissatisfied customers, which can tank a business if not addressed swiftly. Plus, we all know it takes more money to gain a new customer than to retain one, so everything affecting customer satisfaction should be monitored and modified as necessary.
Among the many ways people underperform on the job, one is to do only the minimum to get by and not take even one extra step that might open doors to new sales. Another way to underperform is to pay more attention to personal text messages during business meetings. Another is to have zero curiosity about developments in the industry.
Many problems with underperformance can be addressed by improving support for employees and partners. A big part of that is ensuring that your company culture is conducive to professional growth, as well as making sure colleagues can communicate efficiently with one another. And one key area where communication is essential is goals. It's enormously helpful if team members check in regularly with one another and refine goals as needed.
When these areas of potential business weeds and debris are cleaned up before they become big problems, growth can occur just like fragrant blossoms emerge in spring.
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