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How to dominate the Last Quarter

The last three months of the year are here. Find out how to dominate this final quarter and meet 2018 full steam ahead.

Here are some tips to get started:

1. Glance backwards to go forward

Answer and understand these questions first before you look at this new quarter. Be honest:

  • What worked in the last quarter? Go over your wins and losses from the last three months. What goals were achieved, how were they achieved, and who made it happen? A business operating system will give you clear insight into this data immediately. Alternatively, use a sales management system to sift through the sales numbers and data with your analyst to find out. From this, you will understand which goals you should carry over into the next quarter and how the strategy will have to be adjusted.
  • What didn’t work? Failures are just as important. Failures may be tough to face, but they should be evaluated as earnestly as the wins, so that the team can avoid making the same mistakes in the future, and unrealistic goals can be adjusted.

2. Prioritise your goals

Now that you have a better understanding of what you should focus on, thanks to your review of the previous quarter, sit with your executive team, or your teams in general, and do the following:

  1. Review the plans and goals that have been set.
  2. Organise these objectives into first, second or third priorities.
  3. Assign each priority to a specific person. This person is responsible for accomplishing that task or objective by the end of the next quarter.

3. Establish accountability

Create a weekly planner of how his or her goal will be achieved in order to keep each “goal owner” accountable and on target.

Break up complex tasks into a ‘To do’ list, eg, If the team member has a goal to write one new training manual per week, the list could be:

  • Research the topic Monday.
  • Complete the first draft by Thursday.
  • Send for edit and review Friday.
  • Final approval Monday.
  • Print and bind Wednesday.
  • Distribute Friday.

This can be used for sales targets, production targets, and so on. Any complex task can be achieved if it is broken up into smaller increments and given a clear timeline. Plus, it makes accountability that much simpler.

It’s important to measure and improve clarity for accountability.

4. Measure, measure, measure

It’s game time!

  • Meet with your team regularly to review their progress against their priorities.
  • Use clear visuals that shows the completion percentage – either via your production dashboard shown on a big TV screen in the department, or a visual chart of sorts, or leader board.
  • Hold weekly one-on-one meetings with your direct reports to ensure motivation is maintained, and that there is a two-way flow of communication around vision, progress and any challenges they face that might deter progress.

In this way, everyone knows what they have to do at any given day, they know  the progress that’s been made toward these goals, and buy in is high to reach these goals for this last quarter.

Author bio: Heinrich van der Vyver  is the founder of QuickEasy BOS – enterprise class software that gives owners of SME’s the clout and insight they need to dominate their competition, and simplify operations. www.quickeasysoftware.com

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