‘A sailor without a destination cannot hope for a favourable wind’

Let’s be honest, 2015 was a quieter year than expected but the economic indicators say that things will improve for 2016. So what should you be doing now to get your business ready for next year? The most profitable businesses we act for all have one thing in common – they plan ahead. They have a target which they regularly monitor to see how they are doing and they are flexible enough to change direction if needs be. Writing and implementing a clear plan to drive the growth of your business is essential and probably the single most important thing you can do in January. The three main benefits are:

  1. Planning helps you by providing guidelines and goals for future decisions.
  2. It helps you exercise more control in a situation, establish goals ‘proactively’ and consider contingencies.
  3. It can help ensure a set of actions are implemented that are consistent with your values and priorities.

So how do you start this process? Firstly, take some time out in early January to write down your personal objectives such as income, time away from work, health etc., and then look at what your business should be doing over the next year. Consider:

  • Turnover
  • Products/Services
  • Market Position
  • Costs
  • Profit
  • Customer Services
  • Quality and others

In essence, have a good think about what your business should look like in 12 months time and then write down some targets. Measure these monthly, know your key performance indicators and be prepared to change direction now and again!

If you are thinking of writing your 2016 business plan, please talk to us. We have some tools and templates that may be of use and we would be delighted to sit with you and help to formulate your plan.

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