Businesses take time to grow. Many business owners will tell you that it takes around five years to tell if you will sink or swim. This is why most business plans are set to a five-year schedule. Sustaining your business through its childhood has several parts. This includes proper planning, funding, execution and contingencies.

Not to mention marketing, retraining, learning from mistakes, executing changes to avoid said mistakes and so on. Along the way, you may fall behind and have long nights of tossing and turning.

Asset Assessment

Consider how you spend on assets. This is everything from employees, marketing campaigns and equipment. Let’s not forget the cost of creating products. If you think of huge businesses like McDonald’s, it is clear that they are finding a way to deliver the highest quality products they can, at the absolute cheapest cost to themselves.

Maybe you do not need the latest and greatest equipment when you can spend a fraction of the money on a just as efficient asset at a business liquidation. Maybe you don’t need to hire two employees for twice the money when you can hire one employee who is willing to do both jobs at sixty-five per cent the cost. Why purchase a brand new and shiny POS system when you can sell products on your personal cell phone?

Funding

Maybe you didn’t get the best small business loans from the start or haven’t made a choice on which one yet. Perhaps you have hit a dry spell and need a Band-Aid to cover running costs. Maybe you have realized that bootstrapping your business is costing you time and energy you know you could use to drive your business forward faster. All startups need at least a small pile of cash to sit on.

Dry Spell

Perhaps you sell a seasonal product, or the state is doing road construction outside of your business. Road construction can be a huge income killer, but at an initial stage, they may hesitate to take up the whole expense for all the machinery, one option for getting rid of purchasing machinery can be equipment financing. Sometimes, however, dry spells simply happen. You have a perfectly good product and business, just no one is buying right now.

You are going to have to get creative with paying running costs. Closing your business randomly for a week or two can and will cost you, regular customers. They depend on you to be there and not only when it is convenient. They do not understand what it is like to be a business owner, and money doesn’t empathize. Be prepared to get money where you can in times like these.

Getting Ahead

Now that you have reinforced your castle,  it’s time to go on the assault. Learn, develop and know your industry inside and out. Sustainability is a game of adaptability. Be ready to modify your products to fit the current market. Find creative ways to drop pricing. Ensure your demographics still know that you are there. Complacency kills and it is the greatest threat to your sustainability. Remember to stay frosty.