We are in the last weeks of 3rd Quarter. At this point, as a business or brand owner, your mind is likely racing to figure out how you will accomplish the goals you set at the beginning of the year.
Now is the time to ask tough questions. The sooner your come to terms with the answers, the sooner you can get to work.
1. Can I realistically reach my annual goals based on where I am now?
Look back at your plans. Now is the time to be honest with yourself and your team on whether you can hit the targets you’ve set.
If you are in a position to ramp up efforts and make it work, make solid plans around the increased efforts and go for it. However, if you find that you are too far, now may be the time to adjust the goal or realistically decide to push the date out on reaching it.
The longer you wait to make this decision, the more time and resources you waste if you should have been headed in a different direction.
2. Are these goals still in line with my brand?
It is completely normal for company and brand goals to change as a year progresses. Most entrepreneurs and business owners, unfortunately, do not take time to address the fact that their brand has evolved and the previously set goals may not be in line with the evolution.
If you have found your brand focusing on new or different things throughout the year, or you have been thinking about the next year and find your new ideas are not in line with those goals, 4th quarter is the time to address it.
This is a great time to ask around. If it is your brand, your view will be biased. Ask your customers about the aspects of your brand. See if your brand’s intended perception is being conveyed. Another place to poll is your employees. They are the ones executing your potentially misaligned plans. They are the ones talking about how it doesn’t make any sense, but they will do what they are asked. Give them a chance to speak up and give their opinions.
3. Do you have what it takes to reach the finish line?
This may seem similar to question 1. But this question is about resources and not goals. Do you have access to the money, capital, and human resources it will take to make 4th quarter successful? You may have a great plan that is on brand and in line with your desires. If it takes money to make it happen and you have none, you need to address that issue.
There are many solutions to solving resource problems. If you see where resource problems are arising, now is the time to build relationships with the banks, organizations, and leaders in your area to ensure you know who you can depend on to help you make it.
If you have to face a tough reality that you do not have the resources and you can not get them, DO NOT QUIT. This simply means you have to adjust your goals to make progress with what you have until you are in a better position.
Being uncomfortable is inevitable. As business and brand owners, we exist outside of our comfort zone. Ask yourself these tough questions. Answer realistically. Make adjustments where necessary and keep pushing.