In practice, how many of us do an effective ‘exit review and plan’ and, most importantly, make any changes as a result?
For some, an annual review is a regular, structured event, while, for others, it’s a sporadic ‘quick chat with myself’. And some business owners simply don’t find the time for any kind of business review.
Ten minutes is all you need
If the thought of a business review seems too onerous, formal or time consuming try this ten minute review over your next cup of tea or coffee and jot down:
- The primary purpose of your business
- Three things from this year that went well
- Three things that could have gone better or were missing
- Three things to improve or introduce next year
Having done this exercise, what was your overall conclusion?
Are you happy with the business, where it’s going and your ability to fulfil your ambitions so that you can eventually exit? If this is the case, keep going but also keep an eye out for opportunities to make it even better. Chances are, however, that you have unearthed some things – whether big or small – that you’d like to change.
Looking ahead – big and small changes
Are there small changes that you would like to make to improve your leadership and your business performance over the coming years? Consistently aiming to improve, and encouraging your team to do likewise, is an incredibly effective way of making progress during a year. The cumulative effect of many small changes, which are often easier, quicker and cheaper to implement, can be as transformative as a single big initiative. Furthermore, the ‘habit’ of seeking and making improvements is invaluable to any business.
Or you may have concluded that a major change is needed, either because you feel you need a new opportunity or because things have not gone so well recently – whether COVID related or otherwise. The change you need may not be clear and may require some planning and support to identify the best course of action and how to put it into effect. Working with someone who can generate ideas, bring structure and provide the focus for change may be the best decision you can take right now.
Perhaps the major change you are seeking is because you have had enough of running the business or at least want to get to a position where you have the option of releasing yourself from it. That ‘release’ can come in the form of getting some or all of your time back and/or releasing the financial value you have accumulated in the business. Exit planning in whatever form takes some work and really benefits from the expertise of a business adviser.
So what are your plans for the year ahead and how will you eventually exit your business? Tell us about the changes you’d like to make in 2021 and discover how Henchards can help you get there.