As we are winding down the year of 2021, it is critical for business owners to perform a company review of the organization’s performance. Consider vision, goals, wins and losses, struggles and triumphs.
Family businesses have unique struggles which deter progress and prevent growth in meeting the overall vision of the company. There can be relationship issues between family members or partners, lack of systems and processes to clearly guide the business forward, and leadership conflict.
Despite having a vision for the company and success to date, a company can hit hard times, such as experiencing a family crisis, communication problems between family members and other employees, crises in the market, cash flow problems and loss of key staff.
Here are three reasons why it is important to evaluate what is working and what is not.
Reason #1- Financial sustainability
Having assets and cash flow to absorb business fluctuations, to grow, pay suppliers, build profits and be accountable makes a company appealing to shareholders and investors. Are there areas of the business that are not performing well, profits are down, draining human resources and capital? Are there other areas growing in profitability with long term projected growth in the market? Does your company have a dashboard of critical data that allows you to make adjustments today? Financial management, assessment and reporting can supply you with this information.
Reason #2 – Positive and productive relationships
People who work well together are inclusive, share ideas, contribute, comfortable challenging each other, feel happy and supported. Relationship problems within a business lead to low morale, loss of staff, decision making challenges, and if noticed by customers, gives the company a negative image. This one can be a tricky one to deal with in a family business.
Reason #3 – Achieving vision, goals and purpose
Strategic planning provides a system to follow to achieve company goals, be profitable, agile and adaptive to change. It serves as a guidepost from which business processes, goals and objectives flow from, to know if efforts are successful and if not, where the hiccup points are. It is critical in a business to be able to assess what is working and what is not, and if direction needs to pivot.
How to Get Started
Reflect and gather Information. You need to know where you are before you can plan the course to your desired destination. Only when we take the time to stop, take stock and ask the hard questions can we learn and tap our strengths – as individuals and as a team. Otherwise, all too often our natural, unthinking response is driven by a nearly overwhelming desire to avoid conflict, leading to blame and shame, frustration and disappointment.
To begin, do a simple brainstorming exercise to get your ideas down on paper. Mind mapping is a great tool to creatively illustrate and lay out your thoughts, see themes and how different obstacles and successes interconnect.
- What obstacles are you facing?
- What successes have you had?
- What activities do you need to consistently do?
This will give you an idea of what pieces need to be addressed. It will give you the foundational information you will need to form a strategy going forward. Use your organizational structure diagram to assess whether your company has people with the skillsets that are needed to bring those strategies to life. Critical evaluation of the effectiveness and efficiency of your family business, from working relationships to systems and processes can be hard to identify alone and make decisions about.
There is help. Reaching out to a coach, who can support you in assessing and systematically addressing the stuck points in your business will set you up for a great year in 2022. The time to start is now, as 2021 draws to a close.
Take our Quiz and begin the first step of building success and longevity into the future of your company.