What’s your end game?
Since moving into the advisory space, I find myself asking this question a lot. Small business owners can get so caught up in the day to day operation of their business; they lose sight of their end game. It’s easy to do and happens to the best of us.
To add to the confusing mix of things, your end game changes and morphs. In many cases, small business has to be extremely flexible to survive. Changes to business models often equal changes to anticipated outcomes. OK, so they’ve chopped and changed, that’s the beauty of it all. Embrace this and look to your different, but still pretty awesome, outcomes.
When you’re first starting out in business, saying yes to whoever wants to give you money becomes the norm. My husband refers to it as financial anxiety; you can get lost in the day to day operating and managing, saying yes when you should decline, just in case the cash stops flowing. When you finally get home, the kids are in bed, your dinners cold and you look for solace in front of the TV. Eat, Sleep, Work, Repeat! Sound familiar? It can be a real downer; you can quickly spiral into a black hole when you become reactive rather than proactive.
So I challenge you to snap out of it! Let’s stop reacting to every job thrown at us and instead proactively assess if we need it. Is the money worth the time you put in? Is there a much better way? (this is a rhetorical question, but I’m going to answer it… YES!!)
Get a whiteboard and start writing down why you started your own business. Self-assess how far you’ve come on your journey and adjust, where necessary, to get yourself back on track. You have to take ownership of those reactive ‘yeah sure I’ll take the job’ and crack the whip on yourself. It’s truly terrifying to start saying no to potential clients when there is no plan in place. The reason we say ‘how high’ when a client asks us to jump is usually a result of poor planning and anxiety surrounding cash flow. Take a breather and plan.
There is not one magic solution. However, the more planning involved, the luckier you seem to get. It’s true, we are all busy but burn out is just around the corner and before you know it you’ve lost that grip on it all. Take a step forward today and pull out that whiteboard!
If you would like to find out more about how cash flow and forecasting can help your business move forward, contact Kath at KHB.