All business and financial leaders, regardless of industry, are trying to figure out their business roadmap and how to reach success. We all want results, but we often forget that it’s not necessary to tackle everything on our own to hit our operational targets and sales goals. If you try to take it all on, you’ll quickly find yourself floundering because you’ve lost sight of what’s important and what will get you closer to where you want to be.
Start planning your business roadmap
One of the keys we’ve found at MountainSeed and while working in the appraisal management business is that you need to understand your long term goals to know what you’re working towards. For instance, I’ve talked in previous posts about creating a ten-year plan while considering the vision of the organization, and ultimately drilling-down to your three-year goals. Once you’ve established a three-year plan, determine where you need to be from a revenue and profit standpoint so your plan is specific and measurable.
Break up your three-year goals, into more manageable one-year goals
Next is determining how you’ll reach those three-year goals over each individual year. So if that’s where we need to be in three years, in order to hit our ten-year goal, where do we need to be in one year? When you’ve broken it up into one-year goals, it’s a lot more manageable, but it’s all working towards the three-year goal and, ultimately, your ten-year goal.
Let’s say, for example, that one of your goals is to become the best place to work. In that case, there may be multiple longer steps you must take first like starting with an employee engagement survey. That way, when you reach three years, you’ll have tangible data to try to win the best place to work award.
What about quarterly planning?
We’ve got four quarters in order to hit our one-year goal. If you’re working towards the above goal to become the best place to work, you might determine your benefits aren’t stacking up against your competitors, maybe you don’t have organizational clarity, or people are unsure of their role responsibilities. Once you discover these key places where you can improve, your quarterly goal can be to establish some of those metrics. The end goal is to create four opportunities throughout the year to hit your one-year goal.
As a leadership team, plan on three to five quarterly goals that you’re working to hit. We use a system called EOS, Entrepreneur Operating System, that helps build our one year plan. In order to hit our one year plan, we have these quarterly goals called rocks.
Here’s an example of our Q3 2016 quarterly rocks, so you can see the process in action:
At MountainSeed, we take our quarterly rocks and break it down even further into weekly metrics. Then, we have to determine “what are our weekly metrics that will allow us to see if we are on track to hit our quarterly goals?”
Each department is responsible for planning their three to five most important things to do on a weekly basis. In our weekly sales meetings, we may have new clients or some may have churned. In customer service, you might be able to track by response times. In our case, we have commercial and residential appraisal review as a major service offering of ours, so we track major service level times together to ensure appraisal reviews are completed within two business days.
How’d you stack up on your weekly scorecard?
Once a week, meet with your department or leadership team and see if you’ve met your weekly goals. The power of the weekly scorecard is that you can say “how are we tracking this week, which will impact this quarter, which will impact this year, which will impact our three-year goal, and ultimately impact our ten-year goal?” When you only look at the ten year or three year goal, you’ll never reach it because it’s just too big. Hopefully, once it’s broken down into bite-sized weekly chunks, you’ll get there that much faster and easier.
– Carl Streck, CEO at MountainSeed