It’s a difficult trading environment. Recovering from the pandemic years, and now facing rising inflation and the cost of living crisis, many businesses are feeling the pinch. To help manage the challenges ahead it’s worthwhile conducting a mid-year review to evaluate what’s working and what’s not, so you can tweak your goals for the rest of the year.
Taking a moment to step back and look at what you’ve learnt over the past six months is key to ongoing success, no matter the size and type of business. Doing a review is straightforward, as long as you are honest about where you are at. Set aside some time and write down the answers to these questions. Once this is done it can enable you to map out your goals for the next six months confident that you are in track.
What great things have you accomplished so far this year?
Include everything – big and small. Taking an objective look at what went well, is a good way to understand what works for your business and make note of the learning within each success.
What did you do to make that happen?
Looking specifically in what you did to make it happen can build recognition and confidence in your own abilities as a leader, to support personal growth
What hasn’t happened that you planned?
Be honest here, but don’t judge – often there are good reasons why things didn’t happen. Look at what didn’t happen and then reflect – with curiosity and kindness on why that was. Understanding these reasons, can help you improve your plans, upgrade your skills or update resources to better prepare for the future.
What has worked best for the business this year?
Consider what marketing strategies, relationships, products, processes and clients have worked best for the business. Brainstorm everything that’s had a positive impact on the business and what this means for the second half of the year.
Why have these worked so well, and what hasn’t?
Again, be honest and don’t judge. Really get to grips with why these worked or not, and look at what can be improved, adjusted or stopped altogether to ensure that you can build on what works best for the rest of the year.
What have you personally enjoyed the most, and why?
Businesses and individuals are always evolving so writing down what you enjoyed (or didn’t enjoy) over the last six months may give you a different perspective on where you are heading next.
How are your finances?
Look at how much income you planned to generate and what you actually earnt; what costs did you have – expected and unexpected, and are there any outdated costs you can get rid of. Plan for any quiet periods ahead, such as July/august when business activities can slow down. Use this information to make any necessary adjustments.
Map out your goals for the next six months
Finally, set your goals and objectives for the rest of the year, based on what you’ve learnt from the review. These need to be SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time based. Break goals down into clear plans and activities, then schedule and assign these so you know what actions need to be taken, when and by whom.
All businesses no matter how large or small can benefit from a mid-year review. It enables changes to be made to the current strategy, processes or resource allocation, and fill any gaps. These adjustments come from knowledge and learning, rather than guesswork and can ensure businesses are on track for success.