Well, we pretty much know now that the overall national economic activity isn’t going to improve much in 2013. Nationally, we are still faced with many challenges: huge unemployment, growing national debt, overspending and a national anti-business agenda. Economists in general are also stating that 2013 is going to be much like 2012, even in Indiana.
The business mine fields are many for Indiana business owners, and as you develop your strategic and financial plan for 2013, here are 31 pre-planning questions that will help you be more successful.
1.Where are we likely to finish (sales/cash flow/profits) in 2012?
2.What went right this year?
3.What went wrong this year?
4.What should we have done in 2012 that we didn’t do?
5.What did we do in 2012 that we should not have done?
6.What are our remaining three biggest sales problems?
7.What will be the consequences if we fail to overcome them?
8.What new initiatives (sales, marketing, organizational structure, cash flow, financing) should we explore? (tip – restructure your balance sheet and dramatically improve cash flow)
9.Besides solving problems and launching new initiatives, what must we do better than we’ve done in the past?
10.What can we do, for example, to insure that we will attain 100% of our monthly revenue targets?
11.How can we increase margins? (tip – setting and measuring gross profit margin targets is a proven winner).
12.How can we reduce Account Receivables and get cash in quicker?
13.Where are we wasting and/or spending too much money?
14.What can we do to maximize non-traditional revenue streams?
15.Where is our largest “growth market”, how are we going to identify that target market, and how are we going to sell them?
16.How can we do a better job of prospecting for new customers?
17.How can we improve the revenue from our regular and biggest-spending accounts?
18.How can we up-sell smaller accounts with big-account potential?
19.Should we consider any changes in organizational structure?
20.What additional people do we need for 2013?
21.What additional other resources do we need for 2013?
22.What additional training do we need to improve performance?
23.What “unique expertise” that is not available from our competitors – can we offer our customers?
24.What standard of performance have we set for our salespeople?
25.How do we get the sales staff to buy into our 2013 goals and strategic game plan?
26.What can we do to better manage each salesperson for the good of the company?
27.How can we make our employees jobs more enjoyable? (idea – training to better understand how people think and communicate – we are all different).
28.What annual profit target is realistic for 2013? (idea – ROI should be at least 30%).
29.What monthly profit targets should we set to attain your annual profit goal?
30.What monthly cash flow targets should we set for 2012?
31.Does this management team believe our goals are realistic and therefore achievable? Why?
32.Am I willing to commit, without reservation, setting aside 2-3 hours every month to work on my business? (tip – best thing you can do to grow and improve your business).
Set yourself up for success in 2013 with a specific, written, monthly plan.
Growth & Profit Coach, Financial Strategist, Cash Flow Doctor, CEO Mentor