Every business needs to have a business plan. Whether it’s to provide direction or attract investors, a business plan is vital for the success of your company. With 2019 underway, it might be time to rethink your approach and refine your current business plan. So why not take time to look over your business plan and discover how you can make 2019 the year of success for your company.
- What are your current business objectives, goals & targets?
Setting targets & goals are vital tools for businesses, to help drive their operational performance and help with achieving the business owner’s aspirations. Tasks can be set in line with the overall company objectives to help provide the company’s workforce with a set of aims to meet. It’s important that each year, the goals are reviewed, to see if they’re still in date and achievable. The company goals must be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant & Time-Related), to be truly successful and not overly ambitious.
It’s possible that the activities from the current business year have meant the focus of the company has changed, or the current goals have already been achieved. The business owner should therefore take this opportunity to review the current business plan and update it accordingly. By completing this exercise, you and your team will have a better indication of the current positioning of the business and what it could potentially transform into over the next year. Reviewing business targets has been found to motivate staff and provide an improved analysis of employee performance so get everyone involved!
- Financial review
Perhaps one of the most important things to keep an eye on is the company finances and it not just the profitability. Does the company have enough cash to trade in the New Year? If there are issues, or you believe that struggles will potentially arise for your company, you should seek professional financial advice from a trustworthy advisor. It’s better to acknowledge any shortfalls and prepare ahead now than be left short in the coming months, and find yourself with few alternatives or time to raise the required funds.
Whilst reviewing your current plan, you need to think about what your year end figures are looking like and how they compare to where you thought you would be. If you are ahead of plan can you accelerate growth? or if behind plan do you need to cut resources. Assessing these vital financial areas is key as it can give you a significant amount of information to reassess the company’s current and future performance, and also what is causing it to produce such figures.
- Market insights
The market sectors of today are constantly changing and it’s imperative that your company stays up to date with the current trends. Don’t let your competitors get the upper hand because of your out of date approach. By undertaking a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats) or a PESTLE (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal & Environmental) analysis, your business will truly benefit. It will allow you to see potential upcoming threats, as well as potential areas for opportunity to succeed.
Beginning the year by conducting this analysis will allow you to prepare for certain industry changes coming up in the years ahead, whilst also reflecting on the last year and where you may have failed to take the opportunity. Monitoring the moves of your competitors will also create new advantages, as it means you can take this information to compete, hopefully leaving you as the successful market leader.
- Review your current workforce
During your business plan refresh, think about your current staff and think about how productive they are and if they’re enough for what you need. It’s wise to think about the upcoming plans for the future of the company and if you’ll need to hire more staff. However, at the same time, you’ll need to make the assessment of who in the team is under performing and working less efficiently. Do you need to schedule performance reviews and job chats with certain members of the team or even let people go?
As a business owner and director, all these areas need to be considered and thought about strategically. In doing this, and gaining the answers you need, you’ll have a better understanding of what needs to be done to help your business succeed and grow in the future year.
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