Three habits to boost your business plans into orbit
3 August 2021 | Featured
Business legends Robert S Kaplan and David P Norton will tell you straight up that around 95% of companies have great strategic plans. But executing those plans just never happens.
Investing time and energy to map out your strategies, sales tactics, operating plans, and organisational structure is essential. The trick is not to file those shiny, well-thought-out documents. Instead, they should guide your habits today, tomorrow and the next day. Easy to say, not easy to do, we get it.
These three fundamentals can help your plans to take off and gain momentum – and help to shape your financial future:
Know the numbers – know the goals
Because your goals will be measurable, don’t hesitate to attach numbers or graphics to them, to let everyone in the team know where they’re heading and every step of progress along the way. It doesn’t have to be as simple as the charity ‘thermometer’ graphic – but it could be! Dashboard-style apps are very customisable and are a one-glance tool for critical metrics. Xero add-on apps are easy to use – as Platinum Xero Partners, Kennas can help you set up the perfect dashboard for part or all of your operations. For example, one add-on that’s a leader in Xero management reporting and financial analysis is Fathom – talk to our Xero ‘nerds’ if you’d like to get this working for you.
Real-time dashboard reporting allows instant recognition and rapid course corrections if the activity is not proceeding to plan. There’s no shame in mid-course corrections – your team will appreciate that you are involved in their day-to-day activity and understand their challenges. Of course, you could also amend those stretch goals to motivate those that enjoy the challenge.
Stay 360-degree accountable
Because you run a business doesn’t mean that you stay motivated and focused every minute of every day. That’s exhausting. The wisest use of a fraction of your time is spending it with an accountability partner to keep you on track. Accountability could look like:
- an advisory board. A well-chosen and empowered board of advice can be a significant favourable influence and a great time-saver. Harness the power of synergy to give you insights into what you could or should do to achieve set outcomes. Kennas can assist in designing the board structure and running meetings regularly to reach your business goals.
- a like-minded business community who do what you do. We’re not talking a huge club of casual acquaintances, but a small group who can inspire you, champion your achievements – and commiserate when things don’t go to plan.
- a trusted advisor or advisors who have successfully done what you are doing. These people will help you avoid pitfalls and keep you focused on the end game.
- a Chief Financial Officer – your own, or a virtual, part-time CFO. Virtual CFO services range from financial reporting to strategic advice and implementation. A good CFO can forecast accurately and help you run a lean, efficient operation that hits those targets. Kennas can act as your part-time CFO, giving timely advice and assistance for all aspects of business improvement and decision-making.
Accountability should run both ways. It’s essential to be available and responsive consistently when your team makes suggestions and even complaints. Be clear as crystal in every communication. Ask for feedback to make sure people understand what you’re saying. And, of course, provide all the resources your team needs for success, including finances and people.
Celebrating equals motivating!
In the urgency to ‘get things done quickly, it’s all too easy to miss the moment to celebrate. We’re not suggesting an organised party or elaborate event, but just the few minutes it may take to catch up face to face, send an email (if you must) or make a phone call. (But don’t let us stop you going all out if it’s warranted!)
The win doesn’t have to be a magnificent achievement – just something that moves the business plan forward.
The plan won’t happen without your team enthusiastically backing you – and the surest way to build enthusiasm is habitually investing in genuine recognition when someone does a task well or successfully takes on a new responsibility.
At Kennas, we have 125 years plus experience in helping business owners achieve their goals and dreams. We understand the inevitable highs and lows – but we do know what works, and we’re always happy to share our knowledge and financial service skills.
Get in touch with the team to discuss any aspect of planning – and achieving – your business goals.