Category: Best Practices
most managers only measure outputs, not inputs, which is like telling a Little League team to score more runs, rather than actually explaining how to swing a bat and make contact with the ball. Similarly, most companies measure traffic, revenue or earnings, without considering how to improve the company at an atomic level: how to make a meeting better, or an engineer more productive.
One of the primary reasons that the strategic planning process fails is because the plan is written and then set aside to gather dust. Once the plan is created, it needs to be communicated to the parties involved in its success. Provide metrics that align with the expectations for the plan’s outcome
The litmus test for each of your strategic objectives is that it has to meet each of these five criteria. If the objective fails to meet one or more of these criteria, then either assess it to determine if it is truly strategic, or revise it to make it more specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and time bound.
Many small businesses are structured as S corporations of LLCs, which means the owner’s personal taxes are intimately tied to their businesses. The flow-through income from the business has to be reported on the owner’s tax returns.
In addition to checking the data accuracy and closing the books, you should think about and plan for the up-coming year. Be sure your tax objective is aligned with your business goals.
Closing the books means you are ending your official accounting period so you can start the next period with a clean slate. It means that once the books are “closed” there will be no more changes to the financial documents for the closed period. So accuracy is critical. The closed books are the “gospel” of what has happened in the financials for your company.
It might make it easier (and more palatable) to think of budgeting as profit planning. If you have a profit plan in place, then you can truly track your income and expenses in a fashion that gives you a clear plan as to how to increase your revenues and where to cut your overhead.