It can be lonely at the top of the food-chain when you're running your own business. As the owner manager, the buck stops with you and that can result in all the pressures of financial management, people management, strategy and business performance ending up on your shoulders. SME owners want to implement change to stay ahead of their game. But when your skills lie in areas other than finance and business strategy, it's near impossible to know the best approach to ensure successful change.
To ease this pressure, it's helpful to have a business coach that has strong commercial acumen and a solid understanding of the financials and the story behind the numbers. A coach can look at your business objectively as an outsider, will act as a professional shoulder to lean on, and can help you to focus on and enhance your business ideas, strategy and longer-term tactics as an owner.
When business owners dedicate the appropriate time to work on their business the results can be phenomenal. These results don’t necessarily need to be growth. It’s about taking the time to ensure the business owners are getting what they need from the business. Importantly, this could also mean ending up with more time back to spend on things that SME owners often miss out on, like time with family and friends.
If you want to get the best from your business, you need to get the best from yourself, as the owner. A business coach helps you to work on your own progression, but by doing so also partners with you to improve the future path of your business ventures. For example, having a good adviser and coach:
First you need a business plan. This should entail what you want your business to look like in 12 months, and what you want to get out of it, both in terms of financial gain but also how it can positively impact your personal life, like ensuring there is time allowed for a holiday. In writing down your plan, you are going to come up with a list of goals for your business. These goals can then be extended out into action items.
Dedicate time each month to work solely on the goals and actions identified in your business plan. Take 2 to 3 hours that are set aside solely for this. This is not a time where you are available to staff, customers or suppliers. Block out the time in your calendar to prioritise it, and make sure you are doing this at a time of the day where you are most productive. For example, if you’re most effective before lunchtime, don’t leave this important time till after the kids are in bed and you’re tired. You must treat yourself as your most important customer.
In the time you allocate consider the following items for review and action:
“Most successful entrepreneurs and business owners have an accountability partner who meets with them regularly. No matter who you are, where you’ve come from, or what you have achieved, a good mentor is an invaluable asset to your business.”
Paul Cunningham, Associate,
SMART Business Solutions
At SMART Business Solutions, we recommend engaging with a Virtual CFO (vCFO) to really get into the guts of your business. It's crucial to having full visibility on what's really happening.
A vCFO should offer regular mentoring and reporting, either monthly or quarterly, which should give you better visibility on your revenue streams, help you benchmark your performance, set budgets, and improve your business value by identifying and repairing operational leaks.
As humans first and foremost, we’re more likely to take action when we’re financially invested in a third party whose sole responsibility is
helping you understand your business, create action items, check in with you and make sure you’re staying on track. That's why having a
business coach that's also an accountant and a financial advisor is the best decision you can make to elevate your business.
If you want to reach your true potential as an entrepreneur and business owner, we’d strongly advise working with a trusted business coach.
Business coaching helps you review, analyse and enhance your business strategy, while mentoring programme you as a business entrepreneur.
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