Posted: Mon 29th Dec 2014
Feeling rested and ready for the year ahead? Share the company vision and plans with your team (and just with yourself if there is no team!) to be sure of starting 2015 on the right track. Here are three steps to a successful presentation and start to the year.
You've made it through 12 months of business and the year-end offers that precious time to mull over where you want to take the company next. One of the great benefits of being your own boss is being able to steer your own course and decide on the direction of the company.
Do you want to launch a new product or enter a new market?
Is there scope to improve on an existing product or innovate with customer service?
Are there any gaps that need filling? This could be knowledge or people and, if so, what's the plan to plug these gaps?
How is technology impacting your sector and what opportunities does it present?
What is the plan to make sales and get to market?
Are there any potential partners that could/should be approached?
Will new expansion require any kind of funding and, if so, from where might this come?
Work these questions through and a 2015 business journey/route/plan will emerge.
Write down the plans in the form of a presentation. This can be prepared for your team or it's a useful exercise to do even if you are a team of one! Give the presentation a beginning/middle/end as follows:
Beginning - look back at achievements and what has worked well over the past year. Business owners rarely give themselves a pat on the back - this is your opportunity!
Middle - the main part of the presentation; your vision and plans for the year ahead. Aim to include:
Vision statement - this may sound like something only big companies have but I do think it's worth every business having one as it clarifies the role and purpose of the company, from which delivery plans follow
Specific targets - set out how many sales you want to make, and to whom
Delivery Plan - outline how these targets will be met, including any commercial partnerships, plus marketing and media plans
Resources - if you have a team, set out who will be responsible for what so team members know their role from the outset
End - confirm and clarify what's just been said. Repetition leads to clear messages being remembered!
The purpose of the presentation and plan is to set a sense of direction for the year, and inspire the team to deliver.
Once delivered, upload the presentation to any project management or online team tools you use such as Basecamp so everyone can refer back to specific points.
With the presentation delivered and you and the team on track, review the presentation and plan each quarter to ensure targets are being met and the vision realised.
There's no greater sense of satisfaction than looking back at the end of the year and seeing how far you've come. May 2015 be the year you travel the distance and enjoy success.