Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Good Riddance to 2020.
My marketing guru (Becky Tunks of CKY Media) and I independently came up with the same idea of a different Festive season GIFT this year. Something to inspire, insight and help fuel our clients for another challenging year that will hopefully deliver success for all.
Being financial advisers, the central theme had to revolve around MONEY.
MONEY doesn’t deliver joy, but its abundance is definitely superior to its rarity if only because it enables you to be the ultimate person you wish, – a philanthropist, a better parent, a more affluent business leader, etc.
This blog is about reflecting on 2020’s challenges, what challenges we face entering into 2021, and how we can best keep our focus on our personal and business goals to do our best in unknown times.
‘Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.’
Robert Louis Stevenson.
‘It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.’ Charles Darwin.
Think back to 2019, its hallmarks were business disruption and change. The constant banter about needing to adjust/pivot was simply annoying.
Yet 2020 delivered a completely unforeseen earthquake by comparison.
Whilst the Health impact in WA was negligible, the economic impact in this state has been profound and uncertainty reigns in the Australian economy. By in large WA business owners have enjoyed improved cash flow but only because of the government stimulus and intervention.
However, 2021 has a number of factors which will send shock waves in positive and negative directions:
- Government stimulus packages for individual businesses are all but done.
- The political fight with our biggest trading nation is unresolved with export industry-wide curtailments happening regularly. This is having a profound impact on the affected beef, wine, barley industries and China exhibits no intention for compassion but rather more of bullying without reservation.
- The osmosis spending of over 1 million extra Australians staying home and unable to leave our shores. This has resulted in huge demand jumps for property and lifestyle assets.
- The travel bug remains strong for holiday makers and particularly retirees, and local tourism operators enjoying unprecedented demand.
How long will state border closures last?
Basically restricted to their own states, holidaymakers are discovering how wonderful our countries natural beauties are which will lead to more interstate travel when it is possible.
- The shortage of labour across all industries and particularly in the unskilled area.
- The significant reduction of overseas students not only impacting on physical academic resources but also infrastructure connected with those institutions and the students.
- Australia has beaten the virus and even though there are continued outbreaks we have learned how to effectively deal them. Certainly, don’t downplay the significance of the health consequences, however, note the rest of the world is still experiencing increasing and unchecked growth in deaths and cases.
- How effective will the vaccines be and consider the new strains?
- The government individual business assistance is all but finished however federally they are spending at least $11 billion on infrastructure projects over the next 10 years. (That is an average of $1.1 billion per annum)
- International share markets thrived during 2020. It appeared the worse the Health impact in a community the better the market performed. The ASX performance was average by comparison (+2% for the year) but there were some outstanding individual winners.
Throw in 2 trends unrelated to Covid:
- Common retail continues to be transacted via the internet and moving away from physical shopping.
The number of empty retail spaces is a growing concern.
The growth of distribution networks and delivery systems is profound.
On the day AFTER Christmas day, I saw 3 different delivery vehicles in my suburb at the same time.
- Marketing and IT resources utilisation remain the 2 biggest challenges for SME’s to thrive.
WHAT’S THE PLAN
‘People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going.’ Earl Nightingale.
Begin by listing your goals. Depending on your viewpoint…
First list the business goals as they drive the MONEY, and then personal goals, ‘çause that’s what life is about.
First personal goals and then business goals, ’cause that’s what life is about.
It doesn’t matter so long as you have clear goals.
What is critical is to make the goals SMART. SMART is an anacronym for Specific Measurable Achievable Relevant Time-bound.
If your goals aren’t achievable then they will fall away, and you will lose faith. So, start with small achievable goals and then build.
Don’t plan to be a multi-millionaire in 3 months! Just because. You need to challenge yourself in realistic ways. You need to believe you can achieve them as if you can’t, who else will. Keep reading for ways to see how you can believe in your goals.
How many times have you heard this?
‘A goal without a plan is just a wish.’ ANON.
I acknowledge you’re thinking, Not Another Inspirational Quote! But! you need to work out how to drive yourself and your business to plan plan plan. And if quotes don’t work, find a song, a documentary, something to keep you driven. Very successful people expand the necessity of planning.
You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win. Zig Ziglar
So, here’s the gift that will deliver the above promise!
Your goals = your plans = your cash flow.
If you want to double your income, plan for it in your cashflow! If you want to spend more time with the family, plan for it in your cashflow. If you want to know how to achieve your goals, plan for it in your cashflow!
Your cash flow is a numerical presentation of your plans/goals. Each figure on your cash flow has logic behind it that forms part of your business plans.
- Cash In = Sales from what, how, why, when, how many, and at what price.
- Sales drive your COGS (Cost of Goods Sold)
- Cash Out = Overheads
- Cash In – Cash Out = Surplus
- Surplus is required for Tax, Loan Repayments, capital re-invested into the business and leaves MONEY available for you to take home.
The most critical aspect of a cash flow is not only it being a recorded plan, BUT that it allows and facilitates measurement and correction.
This feature is actually responsible for the reason some business owners don’t complete a cash flow. It is almost guaranteed that the actual business performance will not follow the expected path of the cash flow.
However, by measuring actual v projected and analysing the variation, proactive business management and better business decision making is assured.
With 2021 representing another tumultuous year in CHANGE, it is critical we project where it will take us and vary our actions when the unforeseen rears its head.
Without a cash flow you are blind and reaction time is much slower.
‘Planning is bringing the future into the present so that you can do something about it now.’