Most of us have probably heard a fair amount of … um … “words” from our country’s leaders on revenue (the “new” taxes), spending, deficit and to my point, budget – where is it? I’ve been around the block at least once and do know politics has no place in a business blog – yet I do not think the time-proven, fundamentally sound practice of budgeting is at all partisan. I don’t think I’d be sticking my neck too far out to think that perhaps the thought may have crossed your mind, that maybe a budget might help some in our government – get everyone on the same sheet, perhaps align inflows and outflows of cash a bit better, inspire confidence, achieve better results? I think at least a couple of us may agree.
Yet … do you have one for your business?
To be fair I think I’m in a small minority who actually enjoy “budget season”. Yet perhaps the end result is more the driving factor – establishing a barometer to measure results, reinforce goal clarity, clarify focus, focus efforts, what’s working – what’s not. Establish a tool to guide, sometimes to fall back on, especially for those who sometimes struggle with saying “no” e.g. “no not A rather B, as we’ve adopted in our plan”.
Goal clarity is a key fundamental – write it down and track it and it will improve. I’m not alone in this belief – see Bob Parsons Rule # 9 of Rules for Success in Business and Life in General – there are many other advocates.
The process doesn’t have to be painful … you can forget about “high, low, most likely”, “zero based” and the like despite what I was quoted in Inc. – Productivity@Work and …
Keep it simple – use last year’s actual numbers as a start if the budgeting process is new for you. My hunch is there may be some limit to the resources in your business … let’s get a handle on how they are allocated proactively. Again, “what worked – what not so much”. If it’s a “not so much”, unless there are some very clear and compelling reasons otherwise, fewer resources should be allocated. And the converse. No?
You probably think about your plan … you’re strategic vision … all the time. Perhaps sometimes at 3:00 AM. Isn’t it time to “get it all down” including your budget? I can all but guaranty your results will improve and you will sleep better once we iron out a few wrinkles and your vision, your strategic plan, your focus, your allocation of limited resources and the like are all in congruence.
You’ll likely still think the process tedious yet no team that I know has been successful without a strategic plan, a budget, a GamePlan™ … a discipline that I believe all business owners should have in place. At least those striving to achieve their goals, their success. Or try it the DC way – sorry I said none of that – but we see how “swell” that’s working. There’s not a whole lot we can do about the big picture … you’re business … we can!
And you’ll sleep better.