In August, the slow, quiet, feeling of summer fills the air in many offices around the world. Each week a different team member is on vacation, some offices have “Summer Fridays,” and motivation seems lacking. In many parts of the country, it’s HOT, which makes most people sluggish and want to be anywhere but inside the office. I get it. (I’m in the 90 degrees, 90% humidity of New York City)
As a business owner, you don’t have time to waste, as slow as August feels, it does creep along, and September will be here sooner than you know. How can you use August to your advantage and make sure that you, your business, and your employees will be ready to get back to work the Tuesday after Labor Day, without missing a beat?
I asked our resident Small Business Educator, Ty Kiisel, his thoughts on getting back to business and he came back to me with four areas for you to make sure you stay on track for a strong finish to the year.
Review Your Goals:
The most successful businesses always set goals, and check up on their progress. Midway through the end of the summer is an excellent time to look back at the goals you set for yourself and your business at the beginning of the year. Share your goals with your entire company and explain why you set these exact areas of focus and how you imagine your team helping the company achieve them. Sharing your goal setting progress with your employees is a great to remind them to check in to see how their individual goals are holding up as well.
Regroup and Recommit:
Now that you’ve looked over your goals talk with your team, your customers, and hit the reset or continue button. Goal setting is not an exact science since we don’t know what external factors will influence your business. If your numbers are on track for the rest of the year (great job!) don’t take this as a sign to rest on your laurels, take this as an indicator that you could push the boundaries and exceed your expectation. Your enthusiasm and commitment to hit or exceed your goals will reinvigorate your employees to get the job done.
Review Your Business’ Financial Metrics:
The end of summer is a great time to sit down with your accountant (or bookkeeper) to go over the important financial metrics that show whether or not your business is healthy and growing or struggling and floundering. There is nothing more honest than numbers, and while your current numbers can’t show future expected growth, you can match your current financial situation to the goals your set at the beginning of the year. This is when you can make an informed decision to reevaluate your goals for the end of the year and set up your employees’ expectations.
Rally the Troops:
Your employees are what make your business run smoothly day to day It’s important to keep them in the loop and up to date on your company goals, financial situation and metrics to help them stay the course and feel part of the process. When your team is back from their summer vacations, and the kids are back in school, it’s a great time to share your goals for the end of the year and push them to do their best.
It’s not easy for anyone to accept that the lazy, hazy days of summer are over, but this gives you a big opportunity to look at your business under a microscope, and the ammunition to jumpstart employee motivation into The Fall.