5 Questions You Need To Ask For Your Equine Business Annual Plan
Whether you choose to do annual reviews or quarterly reviews, there are some crucial questions that every equine business owner should ask to make the necessary changes and to make room to grow. Without an analysis of your business, you risk staying in the same place, and not seeing the movement you would like in your business. To stop this from happening, you need to be asking yourself the right kind of questions, that enable you to look at your business from a different point of view, balancing both your goals, with learning where you are coming from.
If you are unsure of where to get started, here are some of the best questions that every equine business owner needs to ask themselves.
#1 Review what has been going well in your business
Write down all the things, both big and small, that your business has accomplished this past year (or quarter). This is a great way to start your review with a positive mindset, as well as evaluate why things went well, so you can ensure those practices and values are included in your plans.
What goals have been achieved?
What milestones have been hit?
What are you proud of?
You can ask your employees and customers for their thoughts on the business achievements for the year too, as there may well be different things people consider a success.
#2 Review your business performance
A helpful step in your review is to objectively review the business performance. This part of the review needs to be honest, and consider realistically what goals you have hit, and which ones have been missed. The purpose of this section is to help you set new performance based goals that are practical and will assist in growth. Without this part, you may set performance goals that are too small, or unachievable. You can start by asking the following questions:
What were your best selling services? And why?
What were your least favourite services? And why?
Did you meet your performance goals from last year, and if not, how far out were you? And why?
#3 Where do you spend your time?
As a business owner, it is vital to understand where you spend most of your time. Do you spend it on tasks that you are passionate about and tasks that are growing the business? Or are you spreading yourself too thin and completing tasks you do not like? These are real eye opening questions to ask yourself, as it will open up opportunities and room for growth in your business. Ask yourself:
What do you spend most of your working day doing?
Do you enjoy these tasks?
Are they progressing things forward?
What tasks do you find the most challenging?
What can I do less of and hand over to someone else?
#4 What goals do you want to make for next year?
Based on your business achievements, what went well, and what didn’t, you can now start to pull together your goals for next year. This is important to do after steps 1 and 2 because this information will ensure you are not setting goals that are unrealistic, or too small. You want to analyze the information from steps 1 and 2, and use that to set your goals.
Ask yourself: where do you want your business to be this time next year?
You should then take the answer to this question and reverse engineer it into actionable steps that you can take and monitor, ready to review again next year.
#5 What do you need to put in place to reach your goals?
So you have big goals, but how do you achieve them? Most businesses get stuck here, as they know what they want, but don’t consider the actions they need to take to get there. Take your time on this step, as this is the most important if you want to see movement and growth in your business. It also entails asking hard questions and making difficult decisions, but sometimes the investment is worth it. Based on the answers to your questions in the above steps, you will need to consider what tasks you can outsource to help you focus on tasks that keep the business moving, for example, administration, accounts, IT services, marketing, etc. This part will also take research. Make sure you learn about the different areas you can outsource and how they can help you grow, for example, how a managed service provider can help.
You must regularly ask yourself these questions to ensure that you are on track for big things.