4 Gauges Every Entrepreneur Should Monitor


As a business owner, I’m never “off.” The mind of an entrepreneur is always working on opportunities, challenges and next steps. Of all the many thoughts that go through my mind on any given time, there are 4 areas of business that I’m constantly monitoring because I have learned that if they begin to deteriorate, so does my business.

Entreprenuers business thoughts gauges ministry

The Brand. That’s the promise every company makes to those it serves. Whether you sell widgets, services or an experience, your brand promise needs to be monitored. The A Group is a high-end marketing, technology and branding firm. Everything we do is based on strategy and best practices. I’m always monitoring the output of both products as well as services. Are we delivering on our promises?

The Model. Is the current business structure a sustainable one? You’d be surprised by the number of busy businesses that end up failing. I remember talking with an young entrepreneur who was not charging enough per hour to cover his overhead even with a full schedule. Make sure you have a good grasp on the real costs of doing business. If you’re not on top of expenses, income and cash flow, you won’t make it. Make sure you are always asking the question: “is this a sustainable model?” If your answer is no. Change it fast.

The Team. Do you have the right people on the bus and on the right seats? While to some this is a nice take away from CollinsGood to Great, to me, monitoring the Team gauge means life or death. I cannot, cannot emphasize how critical having the right people working together is. I wrote about our hiring processes here, but beyond managing output, monitoring morale is even more important. You cannot achieve greatness with the wrong team. I’m convinced of that.

The Credit. I must confess I had to grow past my own insecurities on this one. I used to think I had to be the smartest person in my business and get the credit for its success. Wrong. Unless you can get past it, your business will never reach its potential. I work with some of the brightest, most capable people I know. Their skill set compliment mine and I’m glad I don’t have to do their jobs, because, frankly, I cannot. Credit comes in the form of  praise, promotions, bonuses and opportunities. I have learned that the more I give away, the more I get back. It’s true both on a personal as well as business level.

In your business or work, which area do you see the greatest need?

  • Dr.mo

    Great post! At my own job, having the right people on the bus is huge. I work with some awesome people, and our research group kicks butt. There are a lot of other groups that don't.

    I'm about to launch a business of my own too. These are awesome tips. I think #1 and #2 are going to be my biggest issues.

    I love Good To Great. that book changed so much of my thinking.

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  • I'd love to hear more of the history of The A Group sometime… how it began… when you made your first hire… when things really took off and what you feel contributed most to that. The beginnings of a business are always so intriguing to me (like reading how Amazon flyered cards in parking lots in the early days, etc). People often see the current success but miss out on the YEARS of hard work that it took to get there. To me, that is a critical learning point.

    On your list, love it. For me, "the model" is my biggest obstacle. I have a sustainable one but am currently reinventing it due to changes I see in the future. Being proactive in that way is tough but necessary (to remain sustainable).

    • Next time I see you, I'd love to give the "early days" story. It's anything but boring. 🙂

  • Joseph

    Great post.

    The area that I am struggling with currently is Brand and the positioning of the Brand.

    I find myself working for someone else right now (good thing) and selling/working with an amazing product that meets the goals of what I have to have to sell for someone. (Whole other discussion and maybe a blog post for me today but I digress)

    The challenge I face is that the Brand was not positioned in the marketplace prior to me, in a solid or proper manner. Key components, mainly service, were left out and the reputation of the brand is tarnished a bit.

    Hopefully the key strategies I have in place will move us past the challenge soon and regain the brand in the marketplace, but it is definitely a challenge.

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  • james

    Great blog! I think the problem with some entrepreneur is that once they start with a certain model or structure, they'll stick with it forever. This is especially true with old traditional businessmen. Every year, our company would post growth either in sales, profit margin, or market share. And every year, we had to slightly change our model in order to adapt to the current position that we are in. Lastly, in any business, God is the boss, and we have been entrusted by Him to run it.

  • Guest

    I think we have a team problem. My company has some ambitious goals, but I’m not sure the people leading it can make them. 

    • Maurilio Amorim

      Team is critical in making any plan succeed.

    • The right team is critical. Without the right people in the right places, an organization will suffer.

  • I love this article!  Thank you .

  • Bryan Randolph

    Thanks for the words.  Had lunch just yesterday about this exact issue and even shared your post about ideas still being on a napkin.  Good Stuff!

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