Are you Ready for 2016?

December 23rd, 2015

25950620_sIt’s that time of year again; time to take stock of the past year and decide what you are going to do differently next year. Regardless of when your financial year starts, there is always a natural break point over the festive period. It’s also the time when most of us take a break from work and that gives us time to clear our head, sort out what we want and how we are going to get it.

Thinking is brilliant but writing it down is better. Rory McIlroy famously does it on the back of the boarding card he uses on his first flight of the year. He keeps it in his wallet – a constant reminder and check point. It works for him and it can for you too.

This is how I do it: questions first…

  1. Profitable services, profitable staff, profitable customers. Your 3 wise rules.
  2. Which 20% of your customers delivered 80% of profit, and why?
  3. What is your product or service margin, is it enough?
  4. Are your team working with you, for you or against you?
  5. How many customers drifted away without you noticing?
  6. Have you booked your holidays yet? No, get on with it – you’re going to need them.
  7. What 3 questions will you ask your top 10 customers? Find out your competitive advantage.
  8. Answer truthfully, could your business continue without you?
  9. Remember glass half full? Believe you can and just do it.
  10. If you dealt with that problem before – solve it permanently right now.
  11. Are you going to take home at least £100,000 next year?
  12. Is your organisation organised to be consistently consistent?
  13. Have you reviewed your 2016 plans after Q4 2015 performance?
  14. How are you going to get a flying start to the new year?
  15. What are you going to do differently to make more money next year?

Now you need a plan (fail to plan and you plan to fail) – don’t worry this is just 3 pieces of paper, bullet points and few words – not many numbers either. Your goals, a calendar of activities and a cash flow forecast. It’s the equivalent to Rory McIlroy’s boarding card.

If a plan is going to work it must be Easy to Write, Easy to Review, Easy to Focus and Easier to Achieve.

Here’s to a better 2016!


Shirley Mansfield is a highly experienced business coach and Master Problem Solver. With over 25 years’ experience, she founded CoachSME in 2011 to work with business owners to maximise growth, and she is still trying to reduce the 14 handicap! Keep up to date by following me on Twitter @coachsme