The one where we reflect on the year and plan for the future
It's the most wonderful time of the year because data is fun!
My work life has been a little chaotic, as it always is this time of year. I announced my stepping back from The Taproom starting in January, and I made it through not one but two Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekends. As we continue into the holiday season, Govalo is busier than ever, but in the best way.
But while it’s fun to hang around in the present, December is always a time for me to reflect on the past and plan for the future. When I was solo freelancing, I’d take a day to do this. Now that I have two companies, I take nearly a week for each company. It seems like a lot of time spent not working, but remember that this IS work, and it’s well worth the effort.
I wanted to provide you with the guide I use every year for reflection. You’ll need to tweak it according to your business model, but the general framework should be good.
Start with KPIs - revenue, MRR, ARR, revenue per FTE, effective hourly rate, etc. Whatever you tend to use here. Show your goal, then show your actual. Bold where you reached your goals. Then do a breakdown of revenue by month or quarter. Recap with lessons learned.
Client breakdown. Who is new, who is returning, if you’re an agency or freelancer how many leads came in, how many proposals sent, how many leads converted. Recap with lessons learned.
Staff (if applicable). List who came in, who left, and recap with lessons learned.
What are your key objectives? (Be specific!)
What are your Q1 objectives specifically?
How do you plan to achieve these goals?
SWOT analysis (I just love SWOT analyses, okay? Don’t judge!)
How do you plan to market our services?
What types of partnerships do you want to foster + pursue in the new year?
What additional hire(s) might you need in the new year, if any?
What are your revenue goals, broken down by quarter/month?
How do you want others to see you as a business?
What non-financial goals do you have for the upcoming year?
I recommend getting as detailed as possible with these. Don’t answer everything in one setting. Note down your thoughts, change gears, and come back to it. Ask for external advice. Use your network to learn what KPIs they’re tracking and especially what non-financial goals they have. You’ll continue to adapt this year after year as I do, because you’ll always have something new to contribute and think about as you grow.
This is my absolute favorite time of the year. Give yourself the time and space to reflect, and get excited for another great year of entrepreneurship!
See you in 2022 ♥️