Thursday 13th Dec 2018
It’s that time of year when we are all heads down closing out the current year and in parallel planning out next year and beyond; strategic priorities, financial targets, aspirational goals. Are you ready to kick start the New Year with a bang? To help you plan for business success I thought I’d share my 9 highly effective tips so you can set you and your business up for success.
Many individuals lose connection with their WHY or it’s been suppressed by the number of things to do or challenges you face. So, the first thing to do is to re-connect with your WHY. When you are able to answer not just WHAT you do but elaborate the reasons WHY you do what you do, you’ll feel that rush of excitement, passion, and deep rooted emotional connection all over again.
Want to know more about the power of your why?
Watch my video A-Z of Business Growth: W= Why
Certainty, predictability and ‘no surprises’ are key measures of success so with this in mind know your year-end numbers. Sales is the lifeblood of any business and the direct correlation between sales and revenue means there are no places to hide. Numbers don’t lie, they paint a real-time picture of reality so make sure you close out the year knowing exactly what you’ve achieved and how your business has performed.
Having in place a structured, systematic and sustainable business growth strategy is key and it should be centred around the four BIG questions of business growth; How do I increase
How many ideas can you generate when you brainstorm all the different strategies you could use against each of the four BIG questions? Review your current growth strategy and make sure your new ideas are included.
Read more on this topic and check out…
It’s usually because of a lack of a clear strategy that many business leaders, business owners and entrepreneurs get sucked almost exclusively into tactical delivery and crisis management.
Don’t fall into this trap.
Document your strategic plan which outlines a clear vision of where it is you want to get to, why you want to go there, and how you’re going to turn your vision into a reality.
Remember, a strategy is a changeable set of implementable actions that you should frequently revisit and redefine according to shifting market conditions in order to achieve the long term aspirations of the business. It’s not static. Map out a three-year line of sight: target financial goals, revenue and profitable for years 3 and 3; your target markets and target customers; your aspirational organisational design.
Some additional reading on strategic planning…
The key to effective planning and forecasting is to adopt a top down / bottom up approach. A top down approach is usually based on two factors; firstly, the historical performance of the business over the past years with a % growth added on, coupled with the growth ambitions of the business. A bottom up approach looks at what realistically can be delivered. Now, there might be a gap or tension in the middle ground however it is better to have the discussion at the start of the year than to have it six months in when you’re on the back foot trying to play catch up.
Your twelve-month plan should detail your strategic priorities, deliverables, budgets and measures that matter. This plan should then be broken into quarterly ‘bite size’ priorities, deliverables and measures that matter. Building in regular reality checks at the end of each quarter (or earlier if necessary) will help you evaluate what’s working and what isn’t, giving you the opportunity to make the necessary adjustments to your twelve-month and strategic plan.
If you haven’t already, start planning now for 2019. Ideally you should aim to start planning one quarter ahead i.e. in Oct – Dec plan for Jan – March, in Jan – March plan for April – June etc.
The simple message here is don’t wait until 2019 to plan for 2019. Start now as it will give you the momentum into the New Year. There is nothing worse than starting back to work on January 2nd and thinking ‘what are we doing this year?’, you want to start the new year fast out of the blocks.
Now, performance reviews should not be just an end of year appraisal. Instead, they should be about live, in the moment inspirational and developmental feedback and coaching each and every day. If you embed this culture then the annual and half yearly performance review should be the fastest and easiest conversation you have all year as the differences between perception and reality on performance have constantly been calibrated throughout the year.
Want to deep dive into performance management and leadership…
Sign up to my on-demand leadership webinar
The world is full of negativity, which presents a full frontal to challenge to anyone trying to be positive and the one unassailable key to success lies in the ability to shut those messages out. Have you had an unwavering determination to keep going? Have you shown up as the best version of you? Leadership is practised not so much in words as in attitude and actions, are you happy with your performance for the year?
Whether it’s been your best year, worst year or somewhere in the middle celebrate your successes and wins. It’s all too easy to reflect on what we didn’t do or what we did wrong or what we need to do. Spend time celebrating what went well and enjoy the moment.