Reflection is just as important as projection for business success
Business owners are always thinking about the next best thing for their business, and in many cases, this is why they're so successful. The problem is when owners are always looking toward the future, it becomes so easy to forget the past. How far has your business come? What steps were successful along the way? These are just a few of the questions you should reflect on now and then to ensure you and your company are growing while staying true to your goals and business strategy.
You've probably heard the quote "never look back, you're not going that way" and while this is true, there is actually value in reflection, and it can be quite the key to success if utilised properly.
Appreciating the now
Whether your business was born out of your home garage or shared office space, reflecting on the past and remembering where you started can bring a fond appreciation for your current situation. Remember those hurdles you encountered along the way that you thought would break you? They got you to where you are now! Don't be afraid to take a moment and appreciate how far you've come and how much you've learnt.
Learning from your mistakes
Reflection can also teach you what does and doesn't work for your business, allowing you to learn from your mistakes and never repeat them. Everyone makes mistakes in business, especially during those early start-up days, and they haunt us forever! But they're a big lesson and more often than not, won't be repeated again (we hope).
Even something as simple as reflecting on your actions throughout the year, whether it's the type of sales you conducted, the content you posted on social media or the level of customer service you offered, figuring out what resonated with your audience and mapping out a strategy around it can save you time and money, instead of focusing in an area that offered no return in the past.
Reaching goal milestones
To ensure you are reaching the goals you've set for yourself, whether they were at the start of the year or 3 years ago, you'll need to look back at the milestones that have paved the way for your goal to be achieved. Every milestone you hit is one step closer to that final business goal, whatever it may be.
Revisit your goals (big and small) frequently throughout the year and realign your actions to make sure you stay on the right track to achievement. Read more about setting SMART goals and business planning here.
Reflecting on your business journey doesn't have to be a negative experience. There's no need for "what could have been" or "I wish I knew this". While you should continue looking forward in order to move forward, it's okay to look back every now and then to inform those choices that will keep you moving in the right direction.
If you've found yourself stuck on your small business journey, chat to our team at Helix Planning, we have a range of business advisory and business coaching programs that can help set you up for success!