I have been an entrepreneur since I was very young. One of my first ventures was cleaning up my friend’s room for some pennies, my first profitable day! When I was seven, I began working for my father, where I learned even more about starting and operating small businesses. Eventually, I started my own marketing company, record store, and now CPA firm.
Once I founded Heyward CPA, I realized how easy it is to get lost in the hustle and bustle of running a business and forget why you’re in business in the first place. With that in mind, here are some tips that helped me remember my purpose. Perhaps they’ll be helpful for you as well.
Establish a planning season
A couple of years ago, I decided that the last two months of the year would be dedicated to planning for the following year. During this time, I examine the services we offer, whom are we targeting, and how effective we are at delivering what we promise.. I also think about whether the firm serving our purpose; if the answer is no, adjustments are made to get back on track.
Communicate regularly with your clients…
Our goal is to to keep the lines of communication between clients and the firm open. I encourage clients to email, call, or use Google Hangouts to contact me whenever they have questions. Every question I answer and conversation I have is a strong reminder of our purpose, which is to help other small business owners have success within their markets and reach the benchmarks they’ve established for themselves. Answering questions in real time and learning more about our clients’ goals and concerns helps us make sure we’re fulfilling our purpose.
…and with your employees and advocates
Your business’s purpose should be communicated to staff and your advocates (spouse, family, colleagues) on a regular basis. These are the people are most likely to hold you and the business accountable for adhering to your principles, and in the case of your staff, to help make sure that your company operates with its purpose in mind. Communicating with employees about your business’s mission can also help build a strong company culture, which may do more to boost business than a hyper-detailed strategic plan.
Purpose is the catalyst for starting a business, but it can also provide a beacon along the path to success. Purpose can help business owners have clarity when making decisions or feel better when things are challenging. All of our businesses have purpose and those that stay true to that purpose increase their chance of success.