benchmarking

Learn About Benchmarking and the Benefits of Continuous Learning

Learn About Benchmarking and the Benefits of Continuous Learning

I am often amused when I hear business owners claiming that nobody knows their business better than they do. Many believe that they cannot actually improve their business by hiring an external professional. I fundamentally disagree with this thesis. But, I would say that given the fact that I am a management consultant, right?

However, what if the business owner is wrong? What if he hasn’t heard about the new tools or techniques that are transforming the fortunes of his closest competitors? Could his business be performing significantly better? If he doesn’t really care, he should!

The real issue here is that we all too often get too close to the forest to see the trees. We get hung up on the day-to-day activities and forget to scan the external environment. Business owners need to have an internal and external focus if they are to survive and thrive. They need to watch what the best performers are doing and emulate or leap frog them with improvements in their own business.

If you just have a purely inward focus, you are cutting off the opportunity to significantly improve the financial and operational performance of your business. Take the time to look at your direct and indirect competitors and learn from them. Look at what the best companies outside your industry are doing and try to learn from them also.

Consider reading new business books as a matter of habit and subscribe to business or industry magazines that teach you new tricks or educate your about what is happening beyond the four walls of your office. Embrace new technologies that can significantly alter the way you do business. I personally have a hunger for learning and I include my new knowledge in direct client assignments and in products such as HowsMyBusinessDoing, wherein users can enjoy the benefits of benchmarking against evolving best business practices. Check out the longer version of this article for more specific information about this topic.

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