I recently had a moment in my business where I felt like I was doing…
Spring Clean Your Business
Spring is in the air!
The trees are blossoming, and the gardens are showing fresh new growth, the sun is finally starting to win the fight against the grey of winter and people are looking forward to the dawn of a new season. A spring clean is a well-known and often adopted tradition in the home, but what about your business? Could that also benefit from a freshen-up?
It’s very easy to get stuck in a rut in your business, just to drift along and do what you’ve always done. But there are so many areas that could do with a good clean-out, and a new season that is synonymous with new growth is the perfect opportunity for exactly that; a spring clean for your business.
Rather than taking on the potentially daunting task of your entire business, try focussing on the three key areas of your financials, your people and your environment.
In Australia, spring means September, which means we’re more than two months into the new financial year. By now, you’ve hopefully got all your accounts from last financial year well and truly finalised and off with your squirrely accountant who should be getting your tax return in order. If you’ve already submitted your tax return, then congratulations, you’re ahead of the curve! But if you’re still sifting through your shoebox of receipts, then spring is most definitely a time to get last year’s financial house in order.
The next big thing on the financial front is your forecast. Have you completed your budget for this financial year? Looking ahead is a vital part of any business and taking the time to really look at your operation and work out what the next 12 months might bring is critical.
- Are there any pitfalls coming up that might create some challenges?
- Is there any capital expenditure coming up for which you need to stock up the war chest?
- Are there any leases finishing up or any tax liabilities looming?
Getting a handle on what’s coming up financially and planning for it will put your business in a strong position for the year ahead.
No matter what business you’re in, people are a vital part of your operation, and it’s so important to have a deep understanding of where you’re at with your human capital. Spring is a great time to freshen up the garden of your labour force; maybe it’s time to pull out some weeds, prune some deadwood or plant some new seedlings, to make sure that next year’s harvest is strong. It might seem harsh but making difficult decisions on problematic staff can bring great benefits for a fresh start.
Career development is a key concern of many staff members, and it’s critical for them to know they are a part of something in your business and that you’re all pulling together in a common objective. Discussing the dreams, plans and goals of your staff with them in a safe, secure and supportive environment should be something you do on a regular basis. If you haven’t done it for a while, then spring could be the perfect opportunity.
Use the financial forecasting exercise you’ve just been through to map out your workload and your resourcing for the year ahead. Look at your team and the work you need to deliver and make sure you’ve got the right crew sailing your ship into the waters ahead.
Your environment has an enormous impact on your results. Your life and your business are directly affected by your surroundings, so make sure you’re in a good, strong, healthy environment that supports you and your team and is aligned with your vision.
- Is your workplace a mess?
- Does your desk resemble the aftermath of Armageddon?
- Are you surrounded by chaos?
Assess your environment and see if it represents how you want your business to operate. A messy workplace can encourage an uncaring attitude from you and your staff that does not present your business in the best possible light. This doesn’t mean that your workplace needs to be a sterile and sparkling clean environment, just simply that it should be in a state that helps your team to be the best version of themselves.
A good spring clean of your business environment could be just the tonic you need to freshen up the attitude of you and those around you. Before you know it, summer will be upon us, and the frenzied end-of-year activity and Christmas will be in full swing. Tidying up your environment now will put you in a great position to cope with the inevitable busyness that comes with that often-crazy period.
Take a leaf out of Mother Nature’s book and shake off the dreariness of winter; spring clean your business, and you’ll spring into action.
“The opinions expressed by Smallville Contributors are their own, not those of www.smallville.com.au"
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