As a business owner, you should do 3 core things:

1. Production and Operations

2. Sales and Marketing

3. Leading and Strategy

Imagine that you run a bakery. Here’s how the 3 roles should play out:

1. Production and Operations – Production covers The baking, packaging and delivery of the bread. Operations covers keeping the books, managing the employees, managing the facility and ensuring nothing disrupts the production.

2: Sales and Marketing – Finding new customers, building relationships that retain old customers and generally doing things that grow the customer base, grow the sales and grow the profits.

3. Leading and Strategy – Seeing and planning for the future of the business, by directing things in the way they should go, using action plans, techniques, processes, people, technology and whatever else is required to move the business forward.

Now, here’s the problem – A business remains small and stagnant when the owner does not do all these 3. 

If you only do 1 or 2 of them, the business would remain at the same level for many years.

Example – The woman who has been selling bread in the same location for years, same quantity, same table and chair, with no significant increase is focused on only production/operations.

She most likely has never bothered about sales and marketing. She just sits there and customers come. No effort to grow the customers.

She has never sat down to think about the future of the business. She doesn’t care about strategies that can grow the business. She just buys bread from the bakery every day, puts them in the display area and waits for customers to buy. 

Now, let’s imagine that she tried to apply the 3 core areas – Here’s how her business would play out differently .

1. Production and Operations – She finds the best bakery that sells at the best prices for the best quality. She builds relationships with at least 5 major bakeries. After maybe 6 months of selling bread, she hires and trains a young lady to sit there and sell.

2. Sales and Marketing – She goes out each day, seeking places that she can supply bread in at least 5 or 10 loaves. Caterers that make breakfast (toasts and sandwiches) are her target. She soon finds 6 of them who buy a total of 42 giant loaves daily. She keeps hunting for more of those customers. Her target is to supply 200 loaves daily and make a quick 20000 Naira profit before 9am everyday. 

Meanwhile, she teaches her girl to be very warm and friendly to their constant customers and always offer them to buy more than their usual.

3. Leading and Strategy – She has a written plan of how much she should save everyday for growth and expansion. She wants to grow by selling other items associated with bread like mayonnaise, butter and peanut spread. She recently ran to a local Nigerian Mayonnaise supplier (who just started out) to strike a deal that earns her a massive 120 Naira on each bottle of mayonnaise she sells. She got her Uncle to loan her the required 500k minimum fee to register as a mini distributor. She now sells over 3 cartons of that mayonnaise everyday to other bread sellers and her bread customers. 

Her daily profit is nearly 50k everyday, still functioning as a bread seller.

Let me stop here.

I just hope that you now understand how all 3 roles working together can catapult your business into greatness.

Most people who are crying that business is bad only do operations and very little marketing. Their strategy is at zero level.

Until you sit down and understand how to blend all 3 focus areas well enough, you will be stagnating the business.

I wish you growth in your business.

I love you!

Chioma Ifeanyi-Eze

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