I was recently able to spend 3 days in Guadalajara, Mexico with Bernardo and Noelle (husband and wife) and their three small children. This was my first official business consulting job. My goal was to assist in making their bakery more profitable and to help them create time to raise their children.
We worked together on many aspects of business, including:
1. Increasing Sales – Currently, most of their sales come from renting a space at farmers markets. We discussed new sales from producing partially baked and frozen bread for restaurants who would then use their ovens to finish the baking. Everyone felt positive about this idea and agreed to experiment with the good, old trial-and-error method. It seems when the process is perfected, a lot of new sales could be developed.
2. Controlling Expenses – Reducing production costs normally starts with learning to value every minute. Every minute lost is a loss of revenue and profit. Some areas we discussed included; reducing unnecessary trips to purchase raw materials, managing inventory of raw materials, and that the order size is large enough to receive free delivery on raw materials.
3. Accounting– We worked together to set up an accounting spread sheet using, Excel. I suggested that a more sophisticated accounting software can come later. Good business decisions come with good accounting records. And poor decisions come with poor records.
4. Team work – It is important to listen and value all ideas from everyone in the team. Building teamwork does not happen over-night. When this culture is created the benefits are tremendous.
5. Working with your spouse – I shared a number of mistakes I made in this area and suggested using a few words like: “I respect you”, “I am sorry”, and “Let’s work together”.
For those that might be in a position to travel abroad to a developing nation, join us on a www.BusinessMissionTrips.org .
It is my desire to encourage everyone reading these articles to find their place in the Body of Christ and especially those called to the marketplace. A personal satisfaction comes when we discover and develop our God given gifting. As each part of the Body matures, we can see how all the parts fit together uniquely with a bigger purpose of reaching the lost and dying world with answers.
It seems to me that the light that shines the brightest afar should shine the brightest at home. Let’s encourage each other to reach into our world and help those around us with our light.
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