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Longevity in Business

August 1, 2010

Yesterday I had an interesting conversation with another women entrepreneur about longevity in business.  The discussion focused on whether longevity is seen as beneficial or harmful in the eyes of consumers. It seems as novice businesswomen it takes a lot of convincing and sales to prove our value in the marketplace. Then as we matured in length of years in business, our confidence and sales grew.  Then suddenly when we approached our 15th, 20th or more years in existence, younger businesses have come in and gained ground. Their fresh appeal can make any confident business owner stop and pause to consider whether the time has come to change or stay the course.

There seems to be a fine line between being known as a solid, reputable, long standing company and a new, progressive enterprise. The world is made up of consumers who love both. So as a woman entrepreneur with an accomplished and sustainable business it’s not a bad idea to periodically analyze where you stand. We can’t be afraid to be honest with ourselves and to make the changes we need to make to stay viable and keep up with the Jones.

It doesn’t mean we lose our original perspective or our recognizable brand. It means we step back to study and determine if it’s in the best interest of our companies to stay the same, make slight upgrades or do a total overhaul. The answer is most likely dependent on how successful we are financially. If we are maintaining market share and our companies are growing, we will stay the course. If we are losing ground, we need to make moderate or major adjustments.

Today’s post is to make you consider whether or not you feel comfortable with where your company stands in the marketplace. If so, keep doing what you have been doing and let me more people know about your company. If not, look at up-and-coming businesses in your field and figure out their edge. See what you might need to alter to stay relevant and attractive to consumers.

I don’t know many women who like getting older. But many do it by keeping themselves in shape, staying healthy and making changes in their lifestyle when they know it’s imperative. It’s the same thing we need to do for our aging companies. We must give them check-ups, keep them in shape, maintain their health, and make changes when it prolongs their existence.

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