As the CEO of your business, do you find it hard to keep your brand on track? Personally, becoming a business owner is one of the best decisions you can make in your life; however, it is not only about having a good business idea. You have to wake up, look at yourself in the mirror and see that the person reflected there is the CEO who’s going to lead your brand on the path to success. Wow, so much pressure!
Businesses fail not because the ideas are not good enough, but because the way of executing them lacks clarity and understanding of how to face the different challenges. There’s inconsistency, lack of discipline and poor management. And believe me, I don’t want to put all the responsibility on your shoulders, but you, as the CEO of your business, are absolutely in charge of implementing the necessary movements to achieve the mega-success that you longed for so much when you decided to start your business. That’s the function of a real Chief Executive Officer.
This is why I’ve broken down my top 4 moves to really step into your role as the CEO so that you can keep things moving forward with a super solid foundation.
4 CEO Moves to Keep You On Track
CEO Move #1: Create an Annual Action Plan
Okay, okay, relax! There’s no need to have a panic attack! I’m not saying you need to know what will happen over the next 365 days. What you do need, however, is a clear outline of what you want to accomplish over the next year so that you can make strategic actions towards accomplishing them. Keeping track of your milestones will not only help you stay organized, focused and taking constant action, but it will also help you keep your frequency and enthusiasm high, which – let’s just say it – can often be at ground level.
You may think it’s too early, but planning should really begin in October/November and should try to include from January to December of the next year. However, it is obvious that you can carry out your annual planning at any time, so don’t worry if it’s October, January or August … just roll up your sleeves and:
- Define priorities
- Establish your milestones for operations, sales and marketing
- Outline a budget
- Create a strategy to make it all happen!
CEO Move #2: Track Your Finances
There are several ways to track your business’ expenses. From mobile apps where you can record each expense by category to Google Sheets or even writing everything in a notebook (I don’t recommend it, but hey, it’s your business – you know your methods and it’s better than nothing).
At Rebel Office, my Money Date is every Friday. I take advantage of the fact that internal project work is slower and that we are closed that day with clients. So, I light up some candles, play some music and pour myself one -or several- glasses of coffee (or wine *ahem*) to analyze how much we spend daily, each week and each month, and identify how those expenses feel in relation to the development and movement of the company. It’s also a great time to update our bookkeeping system, Wave.
With this portrait of your expenses, you can challenge yourself to cut out those that seem useless or that no longer meet the needs of your business and that due to negligence or lack of vigilance, continue to represent an economic spill that in the long run can be very harmful. At the same time, check if you are investing your money in what will help to run your business in a better way. Maybe due to lack of cash, you didn’t hire someone’s services or you haven’t added that cool tool that will help to automate your processes. Making time for these reflections can help you focus on what’s important and what actually defines a good investment for you based on your 360 view.
CEO Move #3: Do Market Research
Doing market research is as fundamental as breathing for your business because it can help validate your business activities and can determine the viability of your business model and marketing campaigns. Doing this analysis is so dynamic and rich that it can be carried out at the beginning of a project, facing a product or service launch, to know the positioning of our business, take a turn on your internal processes, improve your products and services and more.
This foundational practise will determine:
- The position of your products or services within the market
- The most outstanding characteristics of supply and demand
- How your audience is segmented
- An analysis of your prices
- The best distribution channels for your business
In the end, when you have all the market information of your business in one place, you will see how easy it is to make decisions, come up with improvements for your products or services, find opportunities that you had not contemplated before and finally, achieve success. The Rebel Office Manual for Market Research can be a handy step-by-step guide to keep in your CEO toolkit for when you’re ready to start making market research a regular occurrence.
CEO Move #4: Do a Quarterly Audit
There is nothing better than doing a full review of your business every 90 days to make sure everything is in sync and on track.
It is so easy to get carried away by the fast pace of life, new ideas, new projects and clients that from one moment to another, your business can begin to navigate into totally unknown directions. As the CEO of your own business, it’s critical that you’re aware of everything that happens in it in order to realize if your actions are still connected to your main objectives. More importantly, you need to know that each movement you and your team make is an integral part of that selling machine you’re building. Doing an audit will not only allow you to get back on track if you’re a little off, but it will also give you the guideline to rebuild, redefine, renegotiate and revise old and new projects to make sure that your work and that of your team make 100% sense.
What will you audit?
- Your brand
- Your offer
- Your experience
- Your Content
- Your Finances
- Your Team
- Your own work as a CEO
Keep in mind that people who do reviews like this at the end of each quarter are far more likely to create more success throughout the following months, so, it definitely is a no-brainer.
How To Keep Yourself Accountable
I know, all this might sound a bit overwhelming for now, but as soon as you make these moves part of your CEO routine, you’ll see that everything will perfectly fit in this marvellous puzzle called: YOUR BUSINESS. Now, how to get there? How to acquire this discipline and be consistent? This is the best advice I can give ya: Keep it as stress-free, simplified and streamlined as possible.
- Mark your calendar for each of these moves and put it in “repeat”
- Gather all the info you need for each move. Get organized with templates so you just have to duplicate and consolidate
- Get the tools you’ll need for each move. Yes, the investment is 9/10 worth it
For this last one, we’ve got your back. As always. 😉 Check The Ultimate CEO Spreadsheets Bundle and get ready to rock your role as the boss and reach the mega-success you’ve always dreamed of. This compilation of 4 seriously awesome tools will help you keep your biz on track and implement all that we just talked about with ZERO stress or overwhelm. Access The Ultimate CEO Spreadsheets Bundle here.