Wednesday, December 29, 2010

New Budgets Start For Many in 3 Days - Is That a Good or Bad Thing?

Make Your List (Budget) and Check It Twice -
No. I’m not talking about your shopping list! (Although, if you haven't already - be sure to recognize those closest to you and show them your appreciation for all that they do. It's not too late! And even the smallest recognition gift can mean the world to those who work so hard for the success of your company.)
I’m talking about your P&L. I know it is a dreaded word and an even more dreaded process, but take a look at your results to date and more importantly, your projections. As you look at your projections, ask yourself these questions:
·         Are these realistic? Or was I bullied into these numbers? If they are realistic – great. If you were bullied into high projections, use this time to pull out all the stops, include everyone who could get you there (to those numbers) and come up with a solid plan to hit them.
·         Do I have the staff to hit my projections? If the answer is no, get hiring IMMEDIATELY. If you have not built in a budget for additional staff, well shame on you! Whether you need them or not, always ask for help. Let me repeat that....Whether you need them or not, always ask for help. If you didn’t you are in a very difficult situation and I have only seen three solutions to this problem and not all of them are pretty:
1.       Increase your projections to cover the cost of additional staff –ouch, right?!
2.       Review your existing staff and look for an opportunity to restructure and lay off 1, 1 ½ or 2 people in non revenue producing areas and replace them with new positions that are revenue producing with a combined payroll cost to the person(s) you laid off.  That one hurt even to write, but if you don’t ask for help, up front, very difficult choices need to be made. (You can try commission only positions but these don’t always produce the best candidates, but in this economy, you might get lucky.)
3.       Put your tail between your legs and fess up to your boss that you screwed up and didn’t include the necessary costs (human or other resources) to achieve your goal. This could be very risky as the boss may have been the person who forced the numbers on you in the first place. It could be suicide. On the other hand, you know your boss (or should) and he/she might appreciate the frankness and vision and time to remedy the problem versus finding out later that you just haven’t met your goal. I can’t recommend this strategy to you as only you know if your boss would be receptive to such honesty. But, I can say, go in with a solid plan justifying the additional resources and what their specific contributions will be in achieving your goals. Good luck if you choose this one—and let me know how it goes if you do.
Don't make the mistake of starting off on the wrong or unstable or scary foot. Start off with the truth and a solid plan to get there. The truth may hurt in the short run--but when you hit your goals-- everyone will forget that you asked for help up front. *Hint* If yo get htehelp and hot your numbers, send a personal thank you note to your boss for making it possible. Alos thank your tema -- obvious.
Get out the excel sheet, calculator, forecst sheets, etc., etc., and get real. And then write a plan that will really hit the target.
I am a dynamo at this exercise so if I can help, PLEASE ASK! it would be my pleasure and honor to assist you in making a realistic polan that you feel confident. I can also help you too present your plan and rationale for staff additions, if you need help.
GOOD LUCK and get crackin'!

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