June 26, 2019

Is your sales forecast achievable ?

They say anything is possible, but at what cost? I have been working on my forecasts for the coming year and having designed my ideal position, I then re-visited the figures to make sure they were practical.

 The good news is that they are, but only after they had been tweaked and I accepted that, in order to be as productive as I want to be, I will be getting extra help in certain areas. As part of this plan, we have compared this year to last to see where we need to do things differently. We have prioritised our efforts and pencilled in dates for the next twelve months.

forecastWhen I say we, I mean my team and I. We did spot that I appeared to be taking extra holiday during one month – I wondered why I was getting so much in the coming year! We also worked together on where to focus and decided on actions to get certain things moving as we knew there would be some quick wins as well as certain areas that would take longer to set up.

So much for my plans, how are yours going? Will you need an investor to fund the next stage of growth? Are you looking to stay the same size but work more efficiently? Do you know where you want to/expect to be by Christmas? Will you have sufficient funds available to finance your tax bill? It is all very well starting with sales revenue, but you also need to focus on the costs and the cash flow.

 Having decided on your ideal revenue, work out what the related costs are, when bills will need to be paid, and when you expect receipts from your revenue. Then add in the VAT and tax bills and if you are a sole trader or partnership, the cash you want to draw from the business. If you are a shareholder in a limited company, consider what dividends it will be able to pay during the year. You are well on your way to having your complete financial plan.

The final stage is to decide how and how often you are going to monitor it. There is little point in putting lots of effort into a detailed plan that sits inside your computer till the end of the year. Don’t put the time in if you are not going to use it. If you are happy to rely on good luck, may I wish you all the best.

 Book coverIf you need help with your planning, Wellington Consulting are happy to work with you to create a plan. You can even come over to our offices to avoid the distractions in yours.

 Let me know whether you use luck or judgement for your plans.

How Flexible is your Business?

With changing times and circumstances, how flexible is your business? Over the last ten years my business has changed its focus due to both customer demand and what I want from my business. To me, this is one of the benefits of being the business owner. The future of the business is my decision.

Book coverWhy are you in business? Are they the same reasons now as they were when you started? I am sure you are wiser and have built up a tremendous knowledge of things you didn’t know, you didn’t know when you started. What else is there for you to learn?

For many business owners, there are some topics that you would rather delegate and positively avoid, what are yours? Even if you don’t do the hands work, you need to have enough knowledge to delegate. If numbers are your monster then I can help you fight it and win. Like David and Goliath, a few well-chosen tools can give you the upper hand. The story of the hare and the tortoise is much the same. A careful and controlled approach means you do not need to go to extremes to win.

gravatarIf you find that your market place is changing, that the technology is moving on at a rate of knots, that you want to fit extra activities into your life in addition to your work, it is down to you to decide how to deal with this.

My business is leaping into its next phase which includes supporting many more businesses succeed and grow. In what area do you need help? Are your customers moving into a direction that you need to catch up with? Or do you need to educate your customers? This will demonstrate you want to do the best for them, to help them keep up with the times. They will then start to respect you as the expert, hang on your every word while you steer them in the direction you want them to go.

Remember, if you monster is numbers, I can show you the tactics to win.

Do you know it all ?

If you look back on the training you received for running your business, does it cover everything you do? On the job training may be how many of our skills are learnt. Who do you work with that is teaching you?

I am a great believer in learning and expect to spend a fair amount of money and time on it each year. I could just attend free events, and they can be useful as a taster. Spending money puts you in control of what topics and at what level you are taught.

This last week I have run two courses where, because they were private courses, we have been able to modify the content during the day to suit the needs of the attendees. I accept the businesses paid for this flexibility, but they had also invested staff time in attending the course. In each case I have set them ‘homework’ to do after the course as the best way to retain learning is to apply it.

One suggestion that will improve your business is to do a management skills audit, decide where there is an opportunity to improve and then act. Find a course or a trainer that matches the list you have made, book and attend the training and then put it into practice! Don’t just pay for the course if the notes will gather dust on the shelf. Build implementation time into your plans.

If you are struggling to find a match for your needs, do get in touch as I have a wide network.