Do You Know The Most Pressing Problem In Your Business?

I ask this question of clients all the time – what’s the most pressing problem (or issue) in your business right now?

Most of the time the answers I get have to do with traffic to my website, lead development or revenue generation.

Sure, we all need more leads and we could all make more money. But is that really the most pressing problem in your business? Often, it’s not.

The most pressing problem can sometimes be elusive. Most of us could benefit from generating more leads, for instance, but that may not be the most pressing problem we face in our business. You see, often the most pressing problem in business has nothing to do with  your marketing or the traffic generation on your website. Rather it has to do with how you actually ‘do’ your business.

For instance, if we could generate 200% more leads for your business this month, what would happen? Could you manage having that many more people wanting to engage in your business? How effectively could you convert those new leads with that sort of increase in volume? Or would you end up dropping the ball on a whole bunch of potential clients?

We’re always thinking that more people means more business. That’s not always the case. Often, we need to prepare ourselves and our business for growth. It means we need to know how to deal with a large influx of new potential clients. We need to have systems in place to manage these situations.

How do you know, then, what is your most pressing business problem? Reverse engineering. Start with the end result. Consider what challenges you’re facing having 200% more leads flow into your business, for instance. Find the holes in your business and fill them. And to fill them, start thinking in reverse until you get to where your business is today. Consider all the steps along the way. Write it all down, turn it upside down and now you’ve got the outline for a plan. Focus on the issue closest to where you are now, and you likely have, at least one of, your most pressing business problem.

We hear it all the time – plan for success. Why couldn’t that mean imagine the success you want and work backward to where you are today? A little secret – it works!

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  1. says

    Very well written article. I agree that many times we do not know what the problem facing the business is in a clearcut manner. I would take one step further and say that this is true not only for on-line businesses but for off-line entities as well. Problem definition is the most critical step in problem solving. Thank you for this in-depth analysis.

  2. says

    You are making a very good point. A good place to look for more ideas in this area is a book from Golratt called “The Goal”, where he explains the concept of the weak link in the chain: the limitations of your business depend on the limitations of the weakest link within the value chain. And so increasing leads may not do you any good if somewhere else you cannot handle the execution. The key to success becomes organizing your whole business around this weakest link, so that you can get the optimum throughput.
    A very critical piece of the equation…

    Marc Dangeards last blog the realities of fundraising