monitoring business performanceHow do you keep the pulse of your business? By monitoring business performance so that you successfully achieve your business goal, and you must do it religiously.

We know most owners don’t do their financial accounting. So, what type of monitoring do you do, and how frequently do you do it?

Every business needs two kinds of monitoring – operational and financial.  The frequency of this reporting is dependent on the type and size of your business.  Our recommendation is at a minimum performance reporting weekly, and financial reporting at least monthly.

How to streamline monitoring business performance

monitoring business performance and level of effortMost business owners say they spend way too much time in meetings. But you can spend less time in meetings and still do a good job monitoring business performance.

To monitor performance of anything, you must first set an expected level of effort.  You notice I said EFFORT, however your financial reports don’t show level of effort.  Which is precisely why most small businesses fall short with their performance.

We push Tuning Your Revenue Engine (TYRE) for the exact reason. You use TYRE to help you determine your level of effort for every aspect of your business, so you can set expectations. Now it’s easy to hold short, meaningful, and structured meetings that take little time at all.

By structuring and focusing your meetings, you can spend less time in meetings and more time working on growing your business.  Most regular meetings go too long because they’re used to discuss and fix specific problems.  You should schedule specific meetings to discuss problems.  Keep performance meetings focused on a specified agenda of monitoring business performance and don’t deviate.  This keeps these meeting short and highly productive.

How you should be monitoring business performance

Regular Performance Monitoring

Remember the Business Growth Simplified approach to business planning created a 2-3 pages and a 1-page budget which translates into a 90-Day Action Plan that you work day-to-day. Your weekly meetings help you monitor the progress on your business plan.

You review action plan progress in your weekly meeting which holds everyone accountable to achieving the objectives assigned to them.  By doing this you move closer to achieving your annual business goal and hitting your revenue target.

Regular Functional Meetings

Your functional meetings relate to the business functions or departments of your revenue engine. In these meetings your managers report the activities happening on the frontline to achieve the objectives set in your high impact business plan.

For example, your production manager should review how much work was complete during the week vs. how much was scheduled vs. how much is required to hit your revenue target.  Next, the sales discusses how many deals closed to hit the goal and if they wrote enough proposals/quotes to keep the revenue engine firing.

And finally, you review marketing. How many leads were generated from the week’s campaigns? Now you can assure marketing’s effort supports the sales.

If you monitor business performance like this, then you can adjust your level-of-effort week to week and influence your monthly financials outcome.  You influence the outcome of your business by tuning your revenue engine!

Monthly Owner Review

The monthly owner’s review keeps managers accountable to achieving the goal and objectives of the business plan.  While you start the meeting with the financial review, your financial reports show the outcomes of the activity for the month.  That is, your financials show the financial results of the work you completed in the previous month.

If your results deviate significantly from what you expected, then as the owner, you want to know what your managers are doing to correct the negative deviations, and further accelerate positive deviations.  Monitoring business performance in this way is so important.  Your effort is what creates your financial results! But most business owners don’t understand how to monitor their level-of-effort and miss out on the opportunity to better control their financial outcome.

Are You Monitoring Business Performance Correctly?

Your answer this question is either yes or no, and if it’s yes, then great!  You should post to the comments below to give others a sense of how you do it.

If your answer is no, getting our agenda templates for each of these meeting types by purchasing our online course Monitoring Your Revenue Engine.  Or, we are happy to consult with you to help you determine your level-of-effort across your business and setup your reporting.  It doesn’t take long to figure it out.  You just need to get started and soon you’ll be on this proactive path to improving the profitability of your business.