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A Look Back: How Examining Your Business Periodically Can Help You Grow

By David Stamper, NPI, Inc. President & CFO

One of the best lessons in life [and in business] is to learn from the past and use it to influence your present and future. Whether you’re just beginning or years into your business, reviewing and improving your records and progress on a regular schedule will pay off for you.

What Information Should I Review?
It’s best to plan to go over every little detail in your business, which means keeping detailed records of what makes your business tick. This involves everything from employee reviews to financial records. You’ll likely find that the things that seemed small at the time actually came to be major factors down the road. You can also look at old inspection schedules and records from meetings with real estate agents. Look for:

  • Which seasons were slower and which were busy
  • Start times and end-times for inspections
  • How often you met with real estate agents
  • When and where any presentations took place, including seminars, expos, BNI meetings and real estate offices
  • Employee schedules
  • Cash flow
  • Various budgets, such as marketing, vehicle maintenance and inspection tools
  • Goals you set in the past

If you have access to all of the details above, that’s great! However, keep in mind that most business owners won’t, and that’s perfectly okay, too. Let this list guide your future record-keeping so that you’re in better shape when it’s time to review next time.

When Should I Review My Findings?
Whether weekly or annually, there’s no right or wrong time to review your records. You can keep the activity solitary or review the details with your spouse, employees or even your NPI, Inc. Marketing Coach, Kimberly Stevens.

How Can I Use the Information?
When you start to look back at a certain time period, you might be a little frustrated. It's not uncommon to see mistakes that set you back financially, which may have seemed like great ideas at the time. The important thing to remember is not to dwell on the past, just acknowledge it and learn from it. Also look at what you did right to ensure that you can repeat your wins in the future. If you have employees, share the information with them so they can see how their work has positively impacted your business. Getting everyone on board can set you on the right path for business growth and help improve employee morale. You can even send your report along to the Omaha office so they can give you feedback and advice on what you can work on going forward.

No matter your business experience, reviewing your performance can continually promote growth in your business. Being able to see what you’ve done and what you could have done better is a great roadmap for the future. Don’t forget, if you need help reviewing your business records to identify your wins and areas for improvement, feel free to contact your home office staff.

 

About the Author
David Stamper, President & CFO
NPI Inc.'s President and Chief Financial Officer David Stamper holds a B.S. in Accounting and Mathematics from Buena Vista University and currently manages day-to-day business activities, performs the company’s accounting functions, coordinates software development and assists with long-term planning. In addition to his management duties, David also helps train and mentor new franchisees and provides business management support for current franchise owners.

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