It’s hard to believe that summer is already here! The kids are out of school and vacation season is in full swing. For business owners and their teams, it’s time for the mid-year course correction. June and July are the ideal time to review all your dreams, goals, plans, strategies, learnings and assumptions. It’s the time to take stock of what’s working and what’s not. Based on your findings, you can make course corrections to ensure that you and your team accomplish your goals and stay on track with your dreams. If you set aside the time and put in the effort for this process, it can make a difference this year and in the years to come. Here are seven things to consider and possibly modify mid-year.
- Review your budget and forecast. Are you on track to achieve your projections? If you are ahead of budget, you must determine if sales will continue to exceed expectations. If you do exceed your sales targets, what will you do with the extra revenue? Is production on track? If you’re falling short of budget projections, can you honestly create the additional revenue to make up the difference? If not, how will you bring your costs down to remain profitable?
- Review all expense categories. Are all your expenses in line? Are the programs and processes you put in place achieving their targets? Are there any that are just not working? If so, what’s the cause? Does the program or process simply need more resources, time or attention or has it totally missed the mark? If there’s no chance it will be effective and profitable, stopping will free up resources for other programs that will give you a return on your investment. Has an unexpected opportunity come up? What will it take to make that work and keep the business financial goals in line? What have you learned?
- Analyze your cash flow.
- Review all your product and/or service offerings. Is there an offering that needs to be dropped? If an offering isn’t performing, what’s the source of that? Would more sales and marketing attention make a difference? Has your offering become irrelevant in the marketplace?
- Have you identified new opportunities? What resources will be required? What’s the timeframe? What benefit do you expect? Will additional funds be required? Where will this money come from?
- Take a look at your competitors. Where do you stand in relation to your competitors? What can you do to become more competitive? What sets your business apart from the competition? Are you living your brand promise?
- Evaluate your marketing programs. Review and assess the effectiveness of your marketing strategies. Which programs and campaigns are working? Which ones aren’t? Is there sufficient time and money to be effective? Should you outsource implementation?
- Bonus question: What do you and your team need to learn to course-correct successfully?
When your review and analysis is complete, you will be in a position to make helpful mid-year course corrections. Doing this will limit the money you invest in unsuccessful efforts, help you keep your goals front and center, and allow you to build on accomplishments from the first half of the year.