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Are you considering a Business Turn Around Strategy?

8 Feb 2021 10:56 | John-Ernest Fogwell (Administrator)
Dear Business Friend,


Many of us have experienced extremely tough economic conditions (mildly put) during 2020 and most of us are reeling from the windstorm and everchanging business environment we now live in. Our hearts can only bleed for our colleagues in the tourism, accommodation, hospitality and liquor industries that are only now allowed to trade, albeit on a restricted basis.

With so many of us looking at our bank balances with trepidation and our businesses with anxiety a “new” term has started to cement itself in our daily conversations: “BUSINESS TURN AROUND”. As with many “new terms” we see many “experts”, as well as our family dog crawling out of its hole, offering turn around advice to all and sundry. As such I thought to dedicate this newsletter to 4 simple steps that I have used in several business growth and turn around plans. These simple tips can be implemented in your own business to turn it from a sinking ship to a ship that is starting to move in its original intended direction.


If one listens to the world leader in innovation, Elon Musk, one must chuck away the spreadsheet and look at what it is that your customer genuinely wants and just as importantly how your product and/or service truly addresses their need. Importantly we must make use of this “investigation” to honestly rate how engaging with your business adds to your client’s total overall life experience. This exercise does not only allow you to re-invent your product/service offering but also allows one to really comprehend the correct price a customer is willing to pay.

By utterly understanding the need of your current and intended customers one will have a true ability to investigate whether your product/service is addressing their needs, provide a positive experience and whether you are offering your customers real value at the correct price point. Customers are more than willing to engage with your if the price and value equation causes the client to return for another engagement willingly and happily. During this investigation you may find that you may be too expensive (for the perceived value received) or that you may be too “cheap” and cannot provide the product/service continuously. It may be that there is ample space to add additional value, at extremely low cost, that can generate additional revenue.

Get your entire team onboard and consistently find additional value adding steps or processes to add value for your customer and work towards providing a more valuable experience in dealing with you.


Look honestly at what your business strengths and weaknesses are from the eyes of your customers, specifically interrogate your strengths and weaknesses towards providing a superior and ever improving customer experience.  Direct your energy, passion and your efforts in a manner focused on leading your team to focus on working towards consistently increasing value adding experience for your customers. Invest in those things that you or your business naturally do to create better customer experiences and then look at what you may either outsource, recruit, work on or invest into to increase the customer experience.  The only way to ensure your businesses ability to survive and thrive in any economy is to consistently deliver a strong customer experience that is slightly higher than expected.

Make the customer king again, start spending every working hour on making your product/service offering better and adding more and more value to your customer. True successes, in this area, are normally based on resourcefulness and not mere resources. One need not make massive expensive changes or vast investments, find simple interventions and actions that will contribute to putting a smile on your client’s face.  Sometimes the smallest gestures, like adding a short phone call after a delivery, sending a gentle reminder message or by adding additional product /services to your offering, can dramatically increase your customer experience and even the increase the actual order or value of the transaction. Ease of implementation and the ability to find simple solutions, focussed on your custumer, is usually were unbelievable growth can be achieved.


Interrogate your financials, by this I do not mean doing a strict budget only. Although a proper budget, with strict adherence to said budget, will make the world of difference, I would like to add another viewpoint to this exercise.  Categorising expenses into two simple categories. Money spent towards engaging with customers and increasing the customer experience and money spent towards dead expenses.

Make sure that most of your spending remains focussed on increasing your ability to remain more and more competitive and add towards a more awe-inspiring customer experience.  Spent your hard-earned money towards becoming a better provider of your product/service and that spending will be earn you money consistently over a longer term. Do not be short sighted here, work towards your strategy bit by bit.

With so many of us having a desperate need to cut on expenses, always remember to focus expenditure, your investment and energy towards positively impacting your customer experience. Cut on expenses that do not contribute towards a better customer experience. Regard your actions as a form of continuous investment, you must be pro-active and forward thinking towards creating a better customer experience, this I can guarantee, will lead to more orders, more referrals and a higher business income.


“Turn Over is Vanity, Profit is Sanity and cashflow is reality”, as the saying goes. Why then do most of us consistently chase turn over. In my life I have seen several high turn-over companies that are in a continuous battle to pay its expenses and find themselves fighting a battle to survive irrespective of a perceived high turnover. Change your mindset from Turn Over to Leftovers. What do I mean by this?  Look at the bottom line, the only real number that “buys the bacon” is the profit. Profit simply put is: The amount that is left over after you have provided your product/service upon which you can truly live on.
Spent some time on properly re-costing your product/service. Look at the number you actually earn, after you have covered all the associated costs of rendering the product/service. Use this “left-over” amount re-budget your business accordingly. Business Owners that continuously look at improving their business from a “left-over” point of view, rather than falling into the proverbial rat race of turn-over chasing, tend to be significantly more profitable and successful over a longer term.

Do not chase big numbers, chase real income.

Over my career I had the privilege to assist just over 50 companies successfully launch or institute “Turn Around Strategies” across the continent. I have seen that by aligning the company and its staff to solely focus on customer and the customer experience one can guarantee your business future whilst the strategy has proven itself to unlock generous medium-term growth in cashflow and the business overall.

With so many of us easily falling into the trap of despondency and negativity during the current “bad economy” we must never forget why we started our businesses. To core reason why any business exists is to serve its identified customers. Let us get back to basics and re-inspire ourselves and our staff that to serve our customer with a product/service they require and provide them with a customer experience worthy of remembering. Just always make sure you do this in a way that you can continuously make a profit and you will be guaranteed to navigate most stormy seas that may approach your business.


Chamber President

Congratulations to As Greek as it Gets Restaurant

One of our most loved establishments have been awarded with the Readers Choice 2020: Best of the Best Award, as publicized in the Pretoria News. We at the Diamond Chamber of Commerce would like to congratulate the phenomenal team at As Greek As it Gets in Oak Ave, for being awarded this prestigious honour. 

Kindly support our short survey on SMME's perceptions about their engagements with SARS. We were recently invited as a member of the SARS Focus Group for the SMME sector. Although we are proud that we can make use of this opportunity to play an active role on behalf our members, we would like to provide SARS with a true reflection of how SARS is perceived by small business in our area. 

It will not take 30 seconds out of your busy schedule. 
Let the DCC know of any news about your business and product. Also let us know of any achievements, interesting events and/or news that you believe our members will find value in. 

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The Diamond Chamber of Commerce (DCC) ia a business chamber for Region 5 including Tshwane, Dinokeng, Cullinan, Rayton, Refilwe, Onverwacht and surrounding areas.

+27 (012) 305 2501
Address: 89A Oak Avenue, Cullinan, Pretoria, 1000


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