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Every business needs to perform a 6 month check up on their company. If you are good, you perform those along the way as well, monthly, weekly, daily, but a 6-month check up should consist of 3 different areas:
Value Chain Analysis
Revisit Quarterly & Yearly Goals
1.--What’s a Value Chain Analysis? This is where you look internally at the process piece of your company and see how you can improve in each area of running your business. This is very tricky to do impartially, but you need to be honest for your business’ sake. What bottlenecks do you see right now (don’t allow yourself to say, “that doesn’t count because we’re waiting for a part to solve that bottleneck, so we already know about that”--no! Be honest and write everything down. Remember, this is merely a survey and not a “To Do List.”
Areas of Analysis:
Firm Infrastructure: Systems/Routines
HR: Recruitment; Formation
Technology Development: product design
Procurement of Resources: ensure resources availability
Inbound Log: Reception, warehousing, distribution of tasks
Operations: how administrative tasks get accomplished
Outbound Log: Storage, transportation, product distribution
Marketing & Sales: CRM, advertising, social media, email blasts, etc.
Customer Service: warranty, maintenance, referral rewards, discounts, etc.
2. What are your company’s Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities and Threats? These questions are also hard to be impartial about, but this is very important to be honest here as well! Strengths and Weaknesses have to do with your company’s skills and abilities. Opportunities and Threats have to do with what is going on in the industry and marketplace and how can your company be benefitted or deterred due to Social, Legal, Environmental, Political, and Technological changes that are here or upcoming.
3. Why revisit Quarterly and Yearly Goals? Yearly goals have to do with benchmarks, financial forecasts that you’re company wants to meet. Quarterly goals are more the month to month operational/sales goals your company has created in conjunction with smaller financial goals in order to meet the Yearly goals. If those goals are in a file that is never brought to light, what are the chances that your company will be able to meet them? Something important to remember is that those goals can change. When planning out a whole year many things change, Marketing, Technology, the best Processes for your product funnel, etc. Don’t feel bogged down and embarrassed to look at those goals. Be honest about where your company is with those. If you have decided to do something different, put the old goals in your “backlog” for later. If the industry has changed and there’s a new way that works better to accomplish your goals, don’t continue to follow the old plan just because you worked hard on it.
Outline of Quarterly/Yearly Goal Meeting:
Vision: why your company does what it does
Mission: who your company provides services/products for
Strategy: how your company provides those services/products
Yearly Goals: financial/operational goals
Quarterly Goals: marketing/technology/process
Are you meeting those?
Do any changes need to be made?
What are the top priorities?
What can be pushed to the next year/6-months?
After this assessment, don’t start searching for a paper bag. This is not meant to be overwhelming but can even SAVE you TIME believe it or not! You’ll need to take your assessment and decide which pieces of your business need to change right away, which are right on track, and which can wait until the next quarter or year. Personally, I have a hard time with reevaluating because I feel like I’m throwing away hard work. Putting projects into a “backlog” where I can still call them back to attention when I need ideas is a great way to make sure your business is running at top efficiency and not wasting time spinning wheels when ideas are needed. As you get used to taking these steps every 6 months, your processes will be streamlined and you will not have huge, hair pulling out bottleneck issues that have gotten worse overtime. You CAN DO THIS!!!