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Crunchers Accountants

Crunchers Accountants

Your Personal Goals in Business – Seminar Report

Archive for May, 2012

Your Personal Goals in Business – Seminar Report

A business exists to make money, right?

Yes, that is true but is that the end of the story? Rarely, if ever.  Moreover businesses that are set up for the sole purpose of turning a profit rarely prosper.  On the other hand a business that does not give any return to its owner, is little more than a hobby, perhaps at best, it is a mission.

Finding where and how one’s personal goals interact with ones business goals was the theme of tonight’s seminar.  Ten business owners braved the heat wave to sweat out the issues involved.  We looked at our Primary Aim in life and the ‘Why’ of our businesses, before confronting our personal finances through the Bucket Concept, uncovering the amount of money we need to create in order to achieve our personal aims.  We explored setting goals and the way that aligning your business goals to your personal goals creates huge power in ones effectiveness.

We have come to expect good feedback from our seminars, and tonight was no exception with scores rating every aspect between 8 and 10/10, with overall value 10/10.

Comments included:
“Very inspirational – Has got me thinking! Liked the delivery – very interesting.”
Brilliant – Emphasised the importance of planning and having goals. Inspired me to get started and stop making excuses.”
Really interesting. Ideas from the TED link were thought provoking.”
Thanks Damion for another great seminar.  I really enjoyed having the space to look at my personal and business goals from a variety of angles in a short space of time.”

Happiness at Work

Surely this is a pie in the sky?  And surely this has no place in an accountant’s newsletter?

Apparently not.  Setting aside whether concern for one’s fellow human being has a place in an accountant’s ordered mind, research shows that a happy work force is is a productive one.  A recent book ‘Practice what you Preach’ by David Maister surveyed 139 different work forces and found that the most productive also were the most fulfilled.  In fact his data showed that just a 10% increase in the happiness of a workforce could produce a 40% increase in productivity.  But surely, we hear you cry, this is because success produces happiness.  Again, this is apparently not so.  The research shows that the success follows the fulfilment.

Further confirmation comes from Dr Paddi Lund’s writing.  After suffering a near mental breakdown, dentist Dr Paddi Lund embarked on a journey to be happy at work.  As a side product he discovered that his dental practice took off.

When you think about it though there is a powerful logic to this perspective.  We like spending time with people who are happy, we like giving money to people we like.  Those who are unhappy find ways to express this to the people around them and they don’t tend to be productive ones.

I believe this message is equally relevant for the self-employed and small business owners as for large corporations.  Running a small business can be as stressful as running a large one.  The more enlightened corporate managers understand the importance of managing their workforce’s happiness, making work a genuinely fulfilling place to be.  As small business owners do we always take the same trouble?  Most importantly do we take care of our own well-being and happiness?  One thing is certain if we the business owner are unhappy, we have no hope of passing on happiness to our team or customers.

This is why we have made our motto at Crunchers:  Grow, Be Free, Have Fun

Designing your Business Dashboard – Seminar Report

“If you can‘t measure it, you can‘t manage it.” So goes the quote from renowned management consultant, Peter Drucker.  This was what 15 business owners gathered to grapple with in East Dulwich last night.

Ask most small business owners how their business is going and the response tends to be ‘Great, we’re really busy’ or ‘Not great, it’s really quite.’  The seminar was about improving on that way of measuring, getting beyond the absolute figures in the annual accounts and beginning to put together a set of numbers that the business owner can consult month to month, week to week or even day to day, to see how the business is faring.

Some financial indicators are a must but dig a little deeper and you can find really key drivers in a business.  For one business it might be how many people you talk to at networking events in a week, for another it could be how many times you underestimate your quote, for a third it could be how long it takes to chase unpaid invoices.  Those are the numbers to put on your Business Dashboard and start to measure and manage, like looking at the speedometer when you drive a car.

A great example of this comes from someone I recently met who runs a membership networking.  When he took over the business he found that he was quite good at signing people up for membership but the business never went anywhere because people left at the same rate.  Then he picked up that his members didn’t really feel connected to the group.  He took on a practice of calling each member at least once every other month.  It wasn’t a sales call, or an information call, it was as simple as saying ‘How’s it going?’.  The upshot was people stopped leaving and it transformed the business.  It takes a morning  a week but to this business owner that target of one call per member every too months is critical.

Our evening together was really about trying to find those type of numbers in our businesses because they are the ones that drive the results.  If you are starting this process yourself you will cover most of the bases if you begin with the following areas: sales and marketing drivers, cost drivers, cash flow drivers, customer satisfaction drivers and worker happiness drivers.  Don’t try to do everything at once, you can’t.  Pick a few and add more as you go on.

Inevitably in this process you need to go beyond what you do habitually.  What you do habitually doesn’t need managing.  And in that sense it requires pushing yourself.  Congratulations to everyone prepared to confront themselves last night.

Feedback was very positive with overall value rated 9/10.  It was great to see so many people there, here are some of the comments:

‘I have attended the seminar for the first time today. I have gained a huge amount of knowledge which I will definitely begin to use to improve my business.  I will begin by dedicating 1 hour a week to applying my targets.’
 ‘These seminars give a practical guide on managing your business.  Damion provides excellent content that you can take away and work on, however he ensures that you get started right there and then on the day. It’s also great to meet others in business and bounce ideas off them.  Highly recommended!’
‘Great starting point and/or reminder for anyone in business to ensure they get the building blocks in place to run their business rather than letting it run them.’