Last week in an email, one of my clients, a General Contractor in Halifax Nova Scotia, wrote a sentence that really struck home for me. He said:
If I do what I do time after time, obviously the results will always be the same. Something has to change.
I think it was the word ‘obviously’ that really makes this statement stand out. Especially this time of year – the year end is always a time where I am looking back at what happened this past year and thinking and planning about changes to improve for next. And “Obviously” if nothing changes nothing improves, unless you have reached perfection already!!
These are words that should ring true for any business owner. No matter what your business goals are, in most cases we all want to improve; to have increased sales and more business. Putting your plans and goals in writing, assessing where you are and analyzing past results are ways to make certain you are seriously tackling the issue of improving your business and not just keeping it at a standstill, a pipe dream.
The assessment and analysis is especially important. Without looking at what you did in the past you will have a hard time figuring out what worked, what didn’t and more importantly, what needs to change.
Here are a few simple steps to take you through the process of making changes in your business:
- Know your results to this point – Financial results and overall Business Practices.
- Have goals set in place and understand where your results have taken you with regards to these goals.
- Have your goals changed? If so, look at the new goals compared to the results.
- Look at what worked to achieve these goals – or what did not. Think about the obstacles (no matter how small) that got in the way of achievement.
- Develop new plans to help you overcome the obstacles and plans to build on what worked this past year.
- Set your goals for the coming year, taking into account all the changes to be implemented.
- Communicate these plans to all who are involved in your business and all who will be affected by the changes.
- Implement the changes and then re-evaluate during the year to assess results and make changes along the way (better than waiting it out til the next year end!)