Accountancy: Larking Gowen
If you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know when you’ve got there? Creating a vision, promoting that to the team and empowering them to devise how it will be achieved, are key aspects to reaching your business goals.
However, writing a business plan in so much detail that you never refer to it again isn’t the answer! A simple one-page plan, setting out where you are now, where you want to get to, and how you’re going to get there, is far more effective. We use the ‘now, where, how’ approach with clients and in our own business because it works.
The ‘now’ is relatively simple to ascertain; however, it’s not just the numbers around turnover, profits and market share, it’s also product/service lines, operations, people and culture.
The ‘where’ derives from the strengths and weaknesses of the business, and the opportunities and threats faced. This is a great way to understand what could be achieved, and where best to invest time, money, and resources.
The ‘how’ is where you can really engage the team. How can they help deliver the end goal? Just as breaking boulders into rocks and then gravel makes them more manageable, break down your goal into measurable actions. Set a deadline for each step and allocate responsibility. Then you’ll make progress with the bigger tasks, because you’ve identified the incremental gains that keep you on track to deliver the bigger plan.
Of course, good financial controls are invaluable to measure progress. Cloud accounting software provides up-to-date financial information, reporting on key metrics so we can monitor progress. Real-time data allows changes to be managed proactively, such as supply chain issues or cost increases. The ‘now, where, how’ plan can be flexed to allow for these factors.
Building takes time and patience. If you set out a timetable to get to your ‘where’, you’ll be motivated by the progress being made. Once you get to your goal, celebrate success. Then agree the next goal.
Short-term plans that flow from the overall longer-term vision allow you to drive your business, building on the great foundations you’ve created, understanding the progress being made, and motivating you and the team to keep moving forwards. We can work with you to help you build a business for the future.
Our podcast ‘Leadership & Life Chat’ provides insights on how we can all be better leaders in our businesses, and our lives. Find the podcast on the usual streaming platforms or visit larking-gowen.co.uk/LLC.
Whilst every effort is made to ensure accuracy, information contained in this article may not be comprehensive and recipients should not act upon it without seeking professional advice. ©Larking Gowen