When you reviewed your year, before starting the new one, did you get what you wanted? Looking back at what exactly you wanted to have achieved by the end of last year and what you want to be able to see for the start of January 2013 – are you there, can you see it, have you done it?
- Do you have the EBIT you want?
- Do you have the turnover you want?
- Are your margins holding up?
- How well are you managing your cash?
- How well are you managing your costs?
- Are you spending on the right things and saving on the right things?
- Did you earn what you wanted to?
- How are your performance rates for individual consultants? Above your standards?
- How has your Non-Exec added value? How do you know?
- How have your support team; FD, HR, Training etc added value? How do you know?
- Are all of your operations team delivering their targets? If they are, how are you fast-tracking those who want to be?
- What was your staff turnover like? And your engagement?
- What career plans did you put together for your people?
- How is your succession planning – who is your successor?
- What’s your personal exit plan?
- How is your market intelligence on the competition and the market in general?
- What new markets have you gone into?
- What are your plans for the future to safeguard against threats to recruitment agencies?
- What’s gone in the wrong direction? And what did you do about it?
- And what have you ignored and hoped would ‘go away’ or ‘get better’ on its own?
What do you want January 2014 to look like? Exactly how will you know when you’ve got there? And what are your check points through this year to remain on target?
These are just a few of the questions it might be helpful to ask yourself. If the answer to some of them is negative or you’ve let too many things slip – after all there are so many hours in a day, take some time to work out your priorities for this year and if some of the questions have made you think then this blog has served its purpose.
Asking yourself questions regularly and taking time out to evaluate what you are doing is crucial for MD’s and business founders and owners; too many CEO’s I know roll from one meeting to the next without room to breathe. Don’t let that be you. Take yourself, or yourself and a coach or NED away into a quiet room once a month (outside of the Board meeting) and ask the core questions. Notice too what you’re not asking yourself which is where an external view comes into play…when we’re too close to something we don’t see the wood for the trees.
And these are some of the topics that I will be writing about during the course of 2014, exploring in greater detail the why’s and wherefores of this long list of important questions so do sign up for my blog each week to have this delivered painlessly straight to your in-box.
I coach and train business owners, senior managers and team leaders in the recruitment industry and have seen first-hand the value of an external view and opinion; don’t let your business suffer for the lack of one and more importantly make sure you get to where you want to be at the end of this year by engaging in this process either with yourself or ideally an external advisor.
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We work with everyone involved in the wonderful world of recruitment; agency-side and in-house, with a particular interest in developing performance in all areas but especially for managers and leaders.