Building your plan for February

February’s Tips for taking control of your year

In taking up the challenge to take control of the year by creating a mission for every week to enhance and grow your business, you probably sailed through January with exciting missions you always wanted to try out. Suddenly February is upon us and it gets more difficult to stick to a mission a week because you might be running out of ideas. 

Take this opportunity to do an easy technical analysis and let it guide you futher. The simplest one, is a SWOT analysis.  Call your team together to make for lists identifying the Strenghts, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats in and surrounding your business and the industry you operate in.  

Strengths should list every advantage you have and now you plan a mission or missions to use them to grow your company or strengthen your team spirit. Weaknesses are the internal issues that is hampering your service delivery or prevent growth.  If you create small bite sized missions to illiminate or reduce them, you may be surprised how this changes the confidence levels of your management and staff. Rome was not built in one day, but every step forward matters! 

Now for the real hard one, and it is not Threats. Most business owners can name all the Threats to their business and particular industry, in a few seconds because we tend to be fixated on the issues that can ruin the business. The difficult one of the four, is Opportunities. This is what sets a true entrepreneur apart from the pack. Your opportunity could be someone elses weakness or simply ask your customers what else you can offer to enhance their positive experience in dealing with you. This could be a mission in itself. It gives valuable feedback and gives clients the impression that you care. It may require more than one brainstorming and factfinding mission to carve out your unique set of oppotunities and develop plans to exploit them.  

Lastly, take care of the Threat list. What can kill or seriously harm your business? Now, what can be done to mitigate these risks. Every business will likely have loadshedding, rising electricity costs and some may list municipalities’ electricity cut offs by Eskom. Crime, changing spending patterns, drought, poor municipal services, protests… these will all be some of the typical items. Most of them, if not all, you will not be able to solve or change. The idea is mitigation, not elimination of the problem. It is like taking out insurance. It will not stop theft or hail, but will cover your losses. Some solutions will be to implement off the grid solutions, water srorage tanks, etc. 

Once again it will be proper information that will guide you. Remember these prevailing threats are some other entrepreneur’s opportunities. There is a solution availablebto mitigate most threats. Get this in place as soon as possible so you can free up your time to grow your business and create more and more opportunities.  

One simple analysis will give you a lot to do in the following weeks and will improve your business and team by countless miles.