Why the Financials Don’t Give You the Bigger Picture

Three months into 2013 – and with the Easter countdown underway – many owner managers will be getting their management team around the table to see if the financials stack up against the business objectives.

In my three decades as a business strategist and executive coach – and chairing peer group forums – I know that pouring over spread sheets for lengthy caffeine fuelled ‘name and blame’ meetings will not address the core issues holding the business back.

What’s needed to enable you to climb to new heights is unearthing the answers to these four critical questions:

1. What worked well?

Digging deep to find these golden nuggets – whether they relate to processes, sales or people performance – is singularly the most important issue to get to grips with.

2. Why did it work well?

Next go through the stages or process of why these particular areas were successful. Was it, for example, because you put yourself in the customer’s shoes or enhanced the experience you gave your customers?

3. What do we need to do more of?

Establishing this is also critical to the success of your ‘Go Forward’ plan and will inject a spring into everyone’s step including yours. Your management team will by now be energised by the positivity these step changes are sparking – energy which they will rub off on their respective teams.

4. What do we need to change to do even better?

This can entail anything from re-examining your role as a leader to ensure you are adding value where it’s most needed, realigning your processes, scrutinising if you are in the right markets, or maximising the productivity and performance of your people.

Ultimately the financial results are just numbers on a spread sheet and do not reflect what is happening in the business.

To see this picture clearly you need a Business Performance Check Sheet which puts all aspects of the company under a microscope. It provides a structured framework to examine everything – including the things that you may not be comfortable addressing. It also highlights the areas where you need to focus and direct your energies.

To hear how I can help you to implement a Business Performance Check Sheet and boost your business goals, leave a comment below, e-mail me via richard.bosworth@whatifspecialist.com, go to @RichardWhatIf on Twitter, Richard Bosworth on LinkedIn or post on www.whatifforums.com.

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