Dec 20 2012
This is the ideal time of year to give your business a year-end assessment and solidify your plan for 2013. Did the business accomplish all its goals? If so great, how do you replicate and exceed that in 2013? If not, what do you have to do differently to change the outcome for next year? There are many facets of the business that should undergo review. Ask yourself these questions to get started:
Year-end is a great time to review your marketing plans and retool what is needed. To figure out if your plan is working, ask yourself:
- What are our strategies for driving revenue?
- Do they work?
- Who are our customers?
- What do they want?
- What segments are we targeting?
- Is our advertising effective?
Every business will have different measures to analyze the effectiveness of their business operations. Here some questions you should ask:
- Are business operations as smooth as they should be?
- What can be done to improve our systems?
- What are our profit margins?
- How do they compare to prior years?
- Is the company as efficient as it can be?
- Are there expense controls in place?
- Do we have reliable suppliers?
3. Human Resources
Having great employees is key to moving your business to the next level. Some questions you should ask are:
- Do I have the right staff?
- Are they all performing to the best of their ability?
- How are we keeping our best employees motivated in the New Year?
- Have we identified key prospective employees as bench strength?
- Would a restructuring of assignments or a new hire help shore-up any weak areas?
4. Emergency Plans
We have been struck with a few natural disasters over the past couple of years. You need to make sure that you have contingencies in place in the event of storms, power outages, supply disruptions, etc. Our cash management team put together a list of things to keep in mind for protecting your business during the next major weather incident or other business altering event, here.
5. Financial Health
Lastly, the financial health of your company should be assessed.
- How is the financial health of the company?
- Do we have sufficient capital?
- Is our healthcare plan adequate? Read our earlier blog post on how HSA plans can help.
- Do we have retirement plans in place?
- Do we have the right financial team in place, both internally and externally?
There may be many other areas to review. The point is to make the team step back, look in the mirror, and honestly assess the situation. You may want to do this with key employees, your financial team or even just by yourself. Your learning’s should be applied to your 2013 plan so you start the new year in the right direction. What questions do you ask yourself at the end of each year? Share them with us in the comments below.