PART 1 – Annual Summary and Evaluation of Your Business
coming soon PART 2 – Planning For the Year Ahead
coming soon - PART 3 – Staying on Track With Your Annual Plan
Companies without annual evaluations often languish in mediocrity, repeating unsuccessful practices year after year and many fading away until one day they close the doors. Annual reviews can be a time of celebration and also accountability. It is a time to measure the company’s long-term vision and goals as part of an ongoing process. It is a time for renewal and recommitment to the reason why the business exists at all!
Whether you already have an Annual Business Plan or not, it is imperative to review your past fiscal year in business. This review is an opportunity to systematically assess where your business stands in terms of:
- being a milestone in the long-term growth of the company
- an opportunity of identifying & celebrating successes over the past year
- identifying weak spots as challenges to deal with in the upcoming year
In a year-end review:
It is necessary to evaluate all aspects of the business, as the company is only as strong as the weakest link. In your review, you must consider:
- business development
- client satisfaction
As you complete annual reviews for a numbers of years, tracking growth, success and challenges, interesting patterns will emerge. If there are repeating elements of success, it is something to build upon. If there are elements of poor performance, it is an opportunity to identify the cause and do something about it.
A year-end review may give the company a means to set better and more accurate annual goals and targets, guided and substantiated by the review’s facts & experience. A year-end review is a stepping-stone toward the long-term company growth and success of your company.
Year-end evaluation will examine your company’s performance:
- revenue, expenses and profit
- staff numbers and team member satisfaction
- company culture
- training programs
- marketing success and not-so-successful
- company strength in the market
- repeat clients, new clients and lost clients
- client satisfaction
- space & equipment adequacy
The year-end review and evaluation is best done in full team meeting. Permit the team members to identify the successes, the challenges and the failures over the past year. In the meeting set a time limit on the input from the team. Once the team has made it’s input and management will have an opportunity to summarize the comments and add their own input and remarks. Finally, a company year end report containing this information should be published and distributed.
This report offers both short term and long-term benefits:
- it can be used as a guideline for planning the upcoming year
- it can be used a constant reminder where the company has strength & weakness
- it can be use in years to come as a year-by-year comparison
- it can be used a measure of the long-term company success
- it can be used as a document in a company financing situation
- it can be use in the case of selling the company to demonstrate growth over time
The year-end review is another system to help manage the company. In my personal experience, throughout my practice’s first 20 years in business, the Year End Review consisted of my visit to the accountant’s office, where he presented to me the annual financials – which, unfortunately, I had trouble understanding. Once I began the complete a thourogh annual review of the company, it evolved into a road map directing me toward building the company year-by-year. It gave me the confidence to make decisions. I cannot overestimate the importance of a year-end review and evaluation to maintain the health of the company.
Coming blog - PLANNING THE YEAR AHEAD:
Outline are the benefits and the process of developing an annual plan for the coming year, which is the next critical step in the annual constructing of a successful company.