Our last Food4Thought dinner of this year took place at the end of November, marking the end of another successful year of Food4Thought dinners. Not only have we supported businesses throughout the year with more than 70 hours of peer mentoring but we’ve also enjoyed some amazing food and wine too!
Across the year we’ve had discussions around a range of different business topics from business planning, purpose and vision, through to sales, marketing, finance, talent and operations. But to bring this all together our final session was around how we can measure the improvements we want in our business. Which are the right performance growth indicators that we should be measuring? And who is keeping you accountable?
Measuring the right targets
Most businesses focus on targets such as the number of customers, turnover or profitability, but these KPIs are the outcome of other things you should be measuring. If the value of your pipeline is poor, your sales will stop and your profits will fall. If you know the value of your pipeline, the average lead time to convert a prospect and your average customer value (all BGIs) you will be able to predict and influence turnover much more accurately.
We discussed around the table the different BGIs that we were measuring as a business, what our reasoning was, as well as how often we were measuring them. Common ones measured were staff productivity, income by project or by day, stock levels, lead times and debtor days.
How people get the information to measure the BGIs was another source of hot debate, with various solutions including dedicated software and good old spreadsheets. What mattered was that it was fit for purpose, efficient and worked for each individual business. We all have our own ways of doing it!
We all know there’s no point in having targets if you don’t keep yourself accountable. Some businesses fall into the trap of shifting the target rather than adjusting their behaviour if it looks like a target is going to be missed. But doing this just moves your success further away.
We all have different ways of being held accountable, for some it was our Accountant or FD and others relied on a business mentor or fellow directors to ensure that they were keeping on track. But we all agreed that most importantly it was to have someone that kept you accountable, a business without accountability is just in danger of coasting along towards potential danger.
Our Food4Thought dinners will kick off again in the New Year and we’re going to be launching an exciting new format as well as starting networks in new cities around Yorkshire and the North. So watch this space…..
Merry Christmas all, have a fantastic break and best wishes for the New Year!
If you’re interested in growth and joining our dynamic business leaders in facilitated peer mentoring sessions over great food and wine, get in touch and simply register your details below.