Indications Of Current And Impending Business Problems

Often various trends and conditions can serve as a signal that business problems exist and should be both recognized and rectified.

While such conditions vary by company, here is a partial list of factors that can signal that significant problems exist:

  • gross margins are declining
  • sales growth is less than that of competitors
  • opportunities for profitable growth aren’t apparent
  • new product (or service) sales are less than expected
  • existing product (or service) sales are less than expected
  • competitors are entering the market
  • loss of market share (especially if unexpected)
  • company stock price is underperforming that of competitors and/or otherwise appears undervalued
  • inability to clearly explain corporate strategy
  • corporate strategy is being criticized by outsiders
  • business problems seem insurmountable
  • “surprises” seem overwhelmingly negative
  • a series of unsuccessful “new hires”
  • excessive turnover of staff

Often, these factors can serve as “early warning indicators” if they are recognized quickly.   If they are recognized and properly addressed early enough, not only can further problems be avoided, but the resolution of such impending problems may better position the company for success…i.e. there may be an opportunity to turn what would have otherwise been a negative outcome into a positive one.