As your business matures and Foundational and Sustaining Elements are in place, some specific disciplines need to be incorporated into your day to day management.
Goal Setting and Tracking
Any business needs to have a system of short and long-term goal setting and accountability. Setting goals keeps the organization focused on the things that must occur daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annually.
All too many times, we allow ourselves to be distracted by things that seem “important” but are not really “vital” to our success. I call this, managing to the loudest noise.
In a telephone conversation with a client, I asked him “How are you doing? He responded with “I’m really busy”. I then asked, “Are you getting anything done?” His response was just perfect. He said, “I don’t know but I’m really busy”.
This likely sounds all too familiar to many of us. I suggest you take a step back, define the business indicators that are absolutely vital to the success of,your company and set measurable, tangible goals for each category. Once in place, you have what is commonly known these days as a “dashboard” for your business.
Now the task becomes one of tracking, measuring, holding yourself and others accountable and taking corrective action when you are off course.
Remember one of the biggest mistakes made in business is not taking corrective action SOON enough. Don’t wait, don live on hope. Manage your business proactively.
Continuing our theme of growing a successful business, today’s post will follow the post on Foundational Elements with the most important Sustaining Elements.
Aligning Business Decisions
Your day-to-day business decisions should be tested against your operating strategies which must align with your exit strategy. So much of our time is spent reacting to things that this behavior becomes a pattern. When we’re constantly reacting to situations, we seldom take the time to be thoughtful about the decisions we are making. Taking time to evaluate each decision and ensuring that it is in concert with your long-term strategy will pay great dividends in the future.
Avoid “Bright, Shiny Things”
For entrepreneurs, chasing the next big opportunity is very seductive. One of the risks of chasing after the next sexy project or product may cause you to get off course. These distractions seem fun and interesting at the time but may not be in the best long-term interest of the business. Each “opportunity” should be filtered through your operating strategies and tested against your exit strategy.
In some cases, the opportunity may be big enough to warrant going after it but the decision must be made with eyes wide open. Resources will be diverted from your current direction in order to finance the new opportunity and while this may be prudent for the business, the decision should be well thought out.
Other “opportunities” may indeed be exciting but the discipline must exist within the management team to say NO to many. Developing this discipline will ensure that you arrive at your destination with maximum value added to your business.