6 Things Every SME Needs to Succeed

In this increasingly competitive world, there are lot of entrepreneurs who succeed, but along with that comes a lot of entrepreneurs that fail too.

To launch a successful small and medium sized enterprise (SME), there are certain requirements that need to be met in order to achieve success. These things revolve around the following:

  • People
  • Goals
  • Resources
  • Processes
  • Vision
  • Finances

The strength of these six factors determines the probability of success. So understandably, the less these factors exist, the bigger the chance of failure.


Businesses that provide services rely heavily on people in order to succeed. A great team of people is needed for great success. But it is not just the employees that matter – there are other important key players too.

Employees – Service based businesses can be difficult as you are in the business of people. Recruiting and training good people is difficult because when employees leave, it is disruptive for your business.

Customers – When you first start doing business, you may find that you deal with anyone. But with experience comes great pearls of wisdom and you soon start to work out which audience you best serve with your service or product.

You need to identify your ideal customer because you can then focus on ensuring your business meets their needs. It is easier to put together buyer personas when you know who you’re trying to please. Eliminating bad customers is an important step in the scaling of a service-based business.

Network – A strong business network is extremely favourable for any type of business. Whether you’re just starting out or have been in the game for many years now, a strong network of likeminded individuals will mean that you find opportunities and open doors which you may not have done before.

Mentors – Every business owner needs a good mentor. All successful entrepreneurs will vouch to having a person or close-knit group of individuals to guide them when times get difficult. Different perspectives are exactly what is needed when you are confronted with unexpected challenges.  You can reach out to personal friends or even professionals to seek the business advice you require.

Clear Goals

It is essential to have clear goals in any business. Each year you should put together a budget – then stick to it.

The next step is to compare the budget against the performance of the business several times per month.  This will help you to stay focused on goals and will mean that everything stays on track. It will mean that there aren’t any unexpected pitfalls because everything will be predicted and well managed before it even happens.

Similarly, good entrepreneurs prepare cash flow forecasts for their business. It should be modified each month on the basis of actual performance and adhering to what it tells you (alongside any advice given from your accountant, of course) should ensure that you don’t creep into the red.

Preparation of goals and forecasting is only possible with updated and accurate numbers, therefore having a fantastic small business accountant is essential.

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Adequate Resources

Many aspiring entrepreneurs think that they need money to make their business thrive. But the trick to success is not just having money, it’s knowing how to manage it.

Managing your resources is a hugely important skill for any small-business owner. There are numerous things that you can do, from working at home, using free software, to acquiring credit from suppliers and utilising the right people at the right time.

It is necessary to understand what your new venture needs and to make sure that you find the resources required to get started. For advice on how to make better use of the resources available to you, a knowledgeable, experienced accountant will prove to be very helpful.


Rigid processes (and following them) are the key to business success, especially when it comes to SMEs. It is not possible to reach the dizzying heights of success you’re dreaming of without people, sales and marketing, all of which require the correct processes to be managed properly. As you gain experience, you will realise how important detailed processes are for scaling businesses.

Since you cannot do everything yourself, you will need to train others to do what perhaps only you can do currently. Learning to delegate at the right time is an essential skill for entrepreneurs.

A service-based SME should be able to operate without the direct involvement of the owner. Build your business with the idea that if you died tomorrow, it could and would still thrive. If you manage to do this, your business is headed in exactly the right direction.


Every business needs a vision. A vision is the bigger picture, where as your goals make up all the little steps it takes to see it.

What is the long-term goal of the business? What is the purpose of the business? Focus on the long-term goals and make sure that every step taken is working towards accomplishing that vision.


Whilst this is last on the list, it is undoubtedly the most important part of getting any new business off the ground. Without the right finances, a business will not thrive.

Entrepreneurs will need money (or at least access to it) to turn their dreams into reality, but it doesn’t just stop there. Having the right people around you will also help more than you perhaps realise, so having the right accountant, management and staff all play a hugely vital role in the success of your business.

Many SMEs fail to succeed in the initial years because they lack the essentials which aid in survival. Keeping these things in mind will help you in the success of your venture and will prevent you from deviating away from the route of success

Looking for a new accountant?

If you looking for some assistance with your accounting services, we’d love to hear from you. Call our friendly team now on 01604 330129.

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