Pain Points Blog
Pain Points was an expression that crept up on me, maybe a decade ago, maybe slightly less. Two words I might never have put together except in maybe a medical sense. Language has always been a changing feast. Today, Pain Points is used in relation to a range of situations, they can exist in your personal life, or in business, simply put, those problems, real or perceived, that cause you pain. More to the point, they cost you money. So, for this blog, I have no hesitation in focusing on business pain points.
Everything I’ve read about pain points tells me they slip into one of four categories, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that these are the four critical areas behind the inspiration for the Coffee Commune; the reason why we set the Coffee Commune up. Not because we enjoy seeing your pain, but because we get enormous satisfaction from helping our members solve their particular pain point.
The four categories are pretty straightforward:
- Productivity “pain points”
- Financial “pain points”
- Process “pain points”
- Resource “pain points”
Productivity is critical to profitability. You might not even realise you’re spending a disproportionate amount of time on one task or function within your business. And, if you’re not aware, then the pain point will only become obvious when problems start to emerge as a result of you not paying attention somewhere else, or one of your key staff wasting their skills on some menial task that has been wrongly delegated. Productivity, or lack of, is one of the primary reasons behind falling profits. If you’re not the right person for the task; if your skills set doesn’t really meet the criteria, but you’re the only person you’ve got who is even remotely qualified, then productivity will be the loser. What you’ve got, without necessarily knowing it is a “productivity pain point”. And it might not be the only one. But “productivity pain points” can be fixed if you talk to the right people.
Money is a critical factor in every business. Cash flow, having the available funds to invest in more efficient equipment, or even paying too much for goods simply because you don’t have the time to negotiate a deal, or look for a different supplier are all potential “financial pain points”. Maybe you’re paying too much tax. What was that famous line of Kerry Packers’? It’s the duty of every red-blooded Australian to avoid paying tax. The conservative mob took him to task, until he correctly pointed out he wasn’t suggesting anyone should “evade” tax. Like “productivity pain points” “financial pain points” can be avoided. That’s why we’ve made sure that amongst our members there are people willing to share their knowledge and their solutions with other members.
The third category pain points fall into is “process”. This is where innovation and new thinking is critical, where technology will most often be a part of the solution, but not always. This is where two heads are better than one when it comes to thinking outside the square, where outdated methods will begin to cost money if they’re not replaced by new thinking and innovation. It’s why we refer to the Coffee Commune as a network of like-minded people. That’s not glib, that was our objective from the start. To bring together people who had suffered a range of different pain points and introduced them to another group of people who had found solutions for those pain points.
The two membership categories highlight the opportunity and the difference. Most of our Accelerator members are dealing with pain point problems every day of the week, often successfully, sometimes not so, and they are prepared to share their ideas. Every one of our Partners are in the business of solving pain points, and while they might charge a fee to do so, as a member you can be assured that their rate will be priced to your advantage. Conversely as an Accelerator member you have FREE access to the people on the end of our Leasing and Legal Hotline who know how to walk that thin line when it comes to dealing with landlords. Same with our IR and HR Hotline, a free service, delivered by one of our partners that all members can access.
The final category of pain points is about resourcing, possibly the most telling issue in today’s market.
Where do you find the people who will help you grow your business; people with the skills that can help alleviate other pain points; people who you can rely on so that you’re not tempted to roll up your sleeves and get behind the coffee machine when there are more critical tasks for you to deal with. And if you can’t find the people, where are the solutions that will help you replace people with technology? Once again, the network comes to the fore, with members who are skilled at not only finding people, but finding the right people to fit your business, your ethos. And, if that’s not the solution what technology can offset the resourcing problem?
There are no pat solutions. Every case is going to be different; every set of circumstances will involve a different set of pain points. But they will be there, even if you need to undertake some sort of audit or SWOT analysis to find them. Fact is, if you don’t do the audit, if you don’t carry out the SWOT, chances are your business is going to struggle with cash flow and profitability. Our goal at the Coffee Commune is to help keep the industry sustainable. If you think you have a pain point you can’t find a solution for, call us. Call one of the team here and we’ll put you in touch with other members who can, who have dealt with similar pain points before, and won!
Phillip Di Bella
IN YOUR WORDS
Sanremo Coffee Machines Australia