As we enter 2024, the business landscape is now getting competitive. It is constantly in the face of change in consumer behavior and advancements in technology. Now more than ever, it’s important that your business thrives, stay relevant, and adopt strategies that can help to ensure long-term success.

According to the latest record of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), a total of 1,080,810 business enterprise operates in our country and 99.58% are micro, small, and medium enterprise (MSMEs). MSMEs also hold 63% of total employment in the country. [1]

While the data indicates positivity, it’s no secret that business owners have their fair share of challenges. It was recorded that the country’s business discontinuance rate (12.6%), exceeds the ASEAN average (4.8%). The major reasons that a business will likely continue to fail are poor profitability, insufficient cash flow, and outcompeted. [2]

Future-proofing your business will allow you to embrace innovation and be proactive. Here are five actionable strategies that will keep your business afloat and keep its legacy until the next generation.


1. Start Talking to Your Consumers. Co-Founder of CIA Bootleg Manila, a brand and innovation consulting firm, Aaron Palileo in the Sun Life’s Supercharge Your Business webinar noted that instead of asking your customers what they like, ask them instead to complain. When someone is complaining, they are more detailed. Ask your customers these ff. questions:

What is Missing?: A desired feature or benefit from the existing product.

What is Annoying?: An existing feature that customers don’t like or want.

What is Disappointing?: An unfulfilled promise - great idea, terrible execution.

From the answers of your consumers, create an innovation objective that is centered on your customers’ responses and turn it into a profitable solution.


2. Generate Ideas. Creating ideas doesn’t have to be perfect, one must generate a lot of ideas first that potentially will solve your problem. Palileo noted that creating a variation of ideas is important and later, you can screen or filter it. To generate ideas as many as you can, you may explore the following questions:

Invert: What is the opposite of the current cliché?

Discover: What ideas can you copy, borrow, or steal from an unrelated field or industry?

Eliminate: What can you eliminate, minimize, and reduce?

Add: What products can you magnify, amplify, exaggerate, or combine?

Substitute: What can you replace? What context can be changed?


3. Adopt a Creative Mindset. Business owners should harness their power of creativity and be different. You need to stay ahead and meet the needs of your customers. However, that is not enough; a creative idea should deliver a better experience for the people and delight the senses to allow you to stand out from others.


4. Make Impactful Improvements. Innovation for businesses is important. Palileo mentioned that elements such as products, services, packaging, distribution, engagements, and operations are the things that an entrepreneur can improve on. He also shared some steps on the innovation process:

Inspiration: Find or frame an innovation objective to solve.

Ideation: Come up and generate solutions for the objective you have.

Incubation: Refine, screen, and test different solutions.

Implementation: Launch the improved product, applying the new solution.


5. Create a Financial Plan. Building a business should have a strong financial foundation. This is where insurance proves to be a valuable and effective financial tool for entrepreneurs. Life insurance can help you secure your business, employees and partners.


As your Partner for Life, Sun Life is here to help you future-proof your business and personal life goals. We offer product solutions that can address your financial needs at every stage of your business. The Business Owner Insurance Packages (BIP) are product combinations designed to address the financial needs of entrepreneurs both for their business and personal goals.

The options include BIP Emergency Fund + Lifetime Protection, BIP Health Protection, BIP Education Fund, BIP Key Employee Protection, BIP Partner/Shareholder Protection, BIP Retirement Fund, and BIP Estate Protection.

Sun Life has been actively serving business owner clients over the years with its Sun Future Proof Program - designed with a business owner’s journey in mind, bringing together financial education and solutions to help them achieve both business and personal goals.

Remember, innovating your business will most likely require funding and you need to be ready when it happens.

To know more about the Sun Future Proof program, visit or talk to our Sun Life advisor today.



[1] Santiago, E. (2023, June 9). MSME highlights for the half of 2023. The Manila Times.

[2] Juico, P. E. (2023, May 24). Umbrellas that don’t open as rains come. Business World.