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How’s your vision?

How To Nail Down A Powerful, Post-Pandemic Vision For Your Business

What does the future hold for your business?  Does everything feel different as we emerge from the pandemic?  Is the ground shifting beneath your feet with none of the usual navigation points ahead of you?  Maybe now is the time to get to grips with why you do what you do.  And where your business is ultimately heading.

Over the weekend, I was reading a book by Greg Crabtree, ‘Simple Numbers’.  He wrote the ‘Cash’ chapter of Scaling Up 2.0 and analysed data on hundreds of client companies.  Having crunched the numbers, he’s concluded that we’re far from recession.  In 2019, growth was starting to slow as access to labour tightened.  As we went through 2020, companies re-organised, slimmed down and focused on efficiency.  Many of them finished the year having grown, with more cash on the balance sheet.  And individual credit scores in the US have gone up by an average of three points. 

It’s not as bad as the doomsters forecast.  Yes, some companies have been hit harder than others.  But many of them are already bouncing back. With governments pumping in unprecedented levels of cash, economies look set to boom. 

So, if there’s no recession, what’s the real challenge as we emerge from the pandemic?  I think it’s the inability to hire good people.  Every one of our clients has open headcount at the moment.  They’re trying hard to resist the desire to hire people who are less than perfect. 

How do you attract good people?  By having a great culture. And what’s the foundation of a great culture?  Three words. A clear vision.

How To Reach Your Full Potential with Eric Partaker

If you feel like you need a coach to get you into peak performance, look no further than Eric Partaker. Eric was named CEO of the Year in 2019 by Business Excellence Awards; he’s been awarded top 30 entrepreneurs in the UK by Startups magazine, and the Telegraph said he was one of Britain’s most disruptive entrepreneurs. 

He was formerly with McKinsey. He was part of the early team at Skype. He was the CEO of Chilango, which sadly, like many other hospitality businesses, got wiped out by COVID. And now he works as a Peak Performance coach for other entrepreneurs and founders. 

In today’s episode, Eric teaches us that anybody can be extraordinary. Eric says we need to learn from children and their ability to adopt another identity when they role play. We just have to create our own identity, and then we can step into it. 

Eric also explains why we need to stop thinking about stress as something that’s bad – he believes stress can be, if used correctly, something that can empower us to be amazing. And lastly, it only takes a small movement or an awareness, to unlock the door to amazing change. 

We thought this was a fantastic conversation. We’re sure you’ll agree.

The Liberators Network

If you’re excited about unleashing organisational superpowers, then this is the podcast for you. We talk about Scrum, Liberating Structures and creating better workplaces. This podcast is created by Christiaan Verwijs and Barry Overeem. Both are Professional Scrum Trainers for and stewards for the Professional Scrum Master II class they created. Aside from their extensive background and experience with Scrum, they are very excited about Liberating Structures and are active members of this worldwide community. We aim to release a new episode every Friday.

Words and Phrases to Avoid in a Difficult Conversation

Difficult conversations are difficult for a reason, and when you’re anxious or stressed out, it’s easy to say the wrong thing. And it doesn’t matter how prepared you are. Your best laid plans will go to waste if you offend or anger the other person.

Customer service is not customer experience (and vice versa)

All too often, when we talk with leaders about customer experience, they’ll nod their heads knowingly and say something along the lines of, “We provide great customer service.” Or they might relate a tale of some time when an employee went above and beyond to fix a customer’s problem.

Granting autonomy without losing control

A decentralized approach to management may become more prevalent in a post–COVID-19 world, and it is true that autonomy can be empowering in an organization. But it also has risks. When I asked the managing partner of a U.S.-based multinational brokerage firm how he makes sure that autonomy and initiative-taking in an organization do not end up in disaster, his reply was: “I give my people the canvas and the paint. It’s up to them to decide what they paint and how.” What he meant by this was that his people can have autonomy but within certain boundaries.

Simple Numbers, Straight Talk, Big Profits!

Take the mystery out of small business finance with this no-frills guide to understanding the numbers that will guide your business out of any financial black hole. Author Greg Crabtree, a successful accountant, small business advisor, and popular presenter, shows you how to use your firm’s key financial indicators as a basis for smart business decisions as you grow your firm from startup to $5 million (and, more!) in annual revenue. Jargon free, and presented in an easy-to-follow, step-by-step format, with plenty of real-world examples, Crabtree’s down-to-earth discussion highlights the most common financial errors committed by small businesses, and how to avoid them.

Simple Numbers 2.0

Looking for an investment opportunity with the capacity for long term high yields? Put your business to work for you! Greg Crabtree demystifies common accounting and reveals the growth potential going unnoticed in your balance sheets. Learn how to make decisions based on data you already have to guide your business to be its best, most profitable self. Building on the principles of his first book, Greg shows you how to dive deep into your data and locate the numbers you need to identify hidden opportunities for maximum return on investment.

News from the Farm

The journey to grow a business can feel lonely and full of disruptions for many leaders. In times of crisis like this, it’s easy to lose sight of where you are and how to get where you want to be. With clarity on your core values, purpose and vision you can streamline your success to scale faster.

Come and meet Scaling Up Coaches Dominic Monkhouse and his colleague, Philip Rose on Tuesday 6th July, and they’ll walk you through the Scaling Up programme that has already helped 2,700 firms worldwide get clarity on their business model.


Calculate your labour efficiency ratios

Labour efficiency ratios will give you a good idea whether you’re over or under investing.  Firstly, calculate your gross margin divided by salary costs. This doesn’t include NI or taxes – just your raw salary total. If you’re paying any contractors, add them in as well. Any answer over 2 is an indicator of efficiency.  Secondly, look at your management labour efficiency ratio.  This is your contribution margin divided by management/admin/sales wages.  Here you’re looking for a figure that’s more than 4.  If it gets up to 8, you may be under-managed.  Look at both these metrics over a rolling 12 month period to see if they’re changing.

Quote of the week

“Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision and relentlessly drive it to completion.”

Jack Welch

Dominic Monkhouse

Dominic offers business coaching and management development, strategy planning and organisational change, using tried and tested methods to launch your organisation onto an unparalleled growth trajectory. His programme is a function of his broad experience, his deep expertise and a proven process used by over 2,700 firms worldwide.

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        Discovery Call | Scaling Up Master Business Course