Less Stress = More Success

For many Dealers, October signifies the end to another marine season as you finish up the last of your service jobs and shrink wrap the remaining boats in the yard for winter storage.  For Motorsports dealers it is a time of transition from summer products to winter products.  So it is time to book that well deserved vacation.  But wait, there are a couple of things you can do before you leave that will make your vacation 10 times more stress free and enjoyable. 

I don’t think anyone would argue that stress can be an overpowering emotion that we have to deal with on a daily basis, especially if you are an owner of a small business.  It can affect your health and performance so I am all about looking for ways to reduce stress.  One of the best solutions I can offer is to get your future business goals in order before you take that well deserved vacation.

This is a process that won’t take you very long to complete and will pay huge dividends in mapping out your future with the satisfaction of having a firm direction or plan of where you want to take your business for the next year.  Acquiring the knowledge of how your business has performed and what you can achieve for the coming fiscal year is worth its weight in gold. 

So here is my check list of what you should do to make that vacation much more enjoyable:

  1. Analyze Your Business:  Grab your financial statements and run some simple calculations to establish how your business performed in relation to industry standards.  This will paint a picture for your next year’s plan.
    1. Liquidity:  Did you have adequate cash flow to pay your monthly bills?
    2. Equity: Has this ratio improved over last year and are you in a position to borrow money if necessary?
    3. Performance:  Were you able to meet your customer purchase requirements while maintaining a healthy inventory?
    4. Earnings:  Did you meet your profit goals for the year?
    5. Expenses:  Were your expenses in line with key industry targets?
    6. Margins:  Did you maximize the margins in each sales department that were necessary for you to achieve your profit goals?
  2. Prepare Written Goals:  It is very difficult to achieve anything without having written goals. Taking into consideration how your business performed from the analysis you just completed, set out realist goals that you want to achieve for the next year that will grow your business.
  3. Make A Plan:  Obviously I am an advocate of preparing a very detailed, comprehensive financial business plan, but any plan is better than none.  When you prepare your plan consider:
    1. What are realistic sales objectives for the next year?
    2. Do you have exciting new products coming from your OEM’s?
    3. What do the economic conditions look like for the coming year?
    4. Can you increase your margins in any of your departments?
    5. Can you bring any economies to your monthly expense budget?
    6. Will there be any changes to your competition over the coming months?

Now that you have analyzed the specifics of how your business has performed, set out your goals for the next year and prepared a plan that will realistically achieve those goals, you can get away with the comfort of knowing you have your ducks in a row. 

You have set the table, you know what you are going to serve, how to prepare it and who is coming to dinner.  I guarantee that if you take a little time to work through these 3 steps, you will lift a huge weight off your shoulders.  You will reduce your stress level significantly so you can go on that vacation with a clear conscience knowing that you are ready for the next business cycle.

If you need assistance getting your plan on paper, contact me for a free consultation.

Comments (1)

  1. stephenrowan

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