SME Business Planning
A new year brings new challenges, new opportunities and for some a new focus. We all took the time in late December or early this January to reflect on the year gone by and make some resolutions for ourselves - kick that bad habit once and for all, get back to the gym, or be more organised. We do this because it sets out a road map for the year ahead indicating our goals, intentions and the changes we want to make in our lives.
But will you take that same approach in your business to the beginning of a new financial year? Will you spend time thinking about your business and then rework your business plan for the year ahead? Will you consider and set budgets for the next year and will you do forward cash flows? An impending fresh new financial year is the perfect opportunity to reflect on the results of last year and adjust/refine the plan for a successful 2015.
Here are just four of the many things to consider when setting a solid plan for the financial year to come:
Review your strategy and vision
Take some time to reflect on your business. Did you achieve your business goals last year? What challenges did you experience? Does your vision statement still adequately reflect your firm’s values? Where do you envision your business to be by the end of June 2015?
A thorough understanding of what worked and what didn’t will help you design an effective strategy to get your business where you want it to be by the end of the year.
Set SMART goals
For the best chance of success make sure you set SMART goals:
Specific: Make your goals clear and well defined.
Measurable: You need to have a benchmark for measuring your goal in order to know when it has been accomplished. Put a definitive number on the goal to help you to monitor your progress throughout the year and also establish some Key Performance Indicators to quickly measure if you are on track.
Achievable: Your goals need to be realistic and achievable based on your available resources. Set goals that are challenging, but within reach.
Relevant: Relevant goals are meaningful to you and your business and are achievable based on the current business climate.
Timely: Give your goals a timeframe. When do you want to achieve them by? A timeline will reinforce the commitment to the goal and help you monitor the progress toward achieving it.
You have a higher chance of success if you put your goals on paper (can be as basic as just a 2 page document) and communicate the goals with your employees and get their buy-in with them.
We’re happy to help you and offer a number of management consultancy services, or feel free to contact us for further assistance.
Get a financial health check
Do you need someone to assist you to review your budgeted and actual revenues and expenses in order to help accurately plan your 2015 financial year finances? Or find where there are areas for improvement?
Take a look at some of the areas our business advisors can help you with.
Take advantage of technology
It’s no secret that technology is the way of the world now and it is important for businesses to adopt it – without losing your personal touch of course. If you can automate certain aspects of your business without sacrificing quality then why not do it? There are a lot of systems and tools now available that can help you automatically manage communication with your clients and engage with them in new ways.
Word Press, Joomla, and most other website management systems have a built in feature to enable you to write, preview and schedule posts ahead of time. You can use this for blog articles or to schedule your upcoming promotions. The same can be done for your social media activities via a free site such as Hootsuite or other social media management systems.
Finally, consider taking the opportunity to engage with your clients on social media. A recent study has shown that 65% of Australians are using social media, of which one quarter regularly use it to follow and find out about brands and businesses. This could open your access to a whole new market or help you better engage with your current clients.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information.