by Melissa Piper Nelson
At the end, or the beginning, of the calendar year, we tend to think back over past seasons and rate our accomplishments. Although these are most often defined as achievements, completions or fulfillments, accomplishments can also mean having overcome a feat or acquiring or developing a skill.
In business, accomplishments are often rated by the amount of sales or return on investment. That precludes, however, other important milestones such as adopting a new idea or concept, solving labor issues, building a new facility, developing a new market or implementing a different training strategy. Any of these factors equals an accomplishment.
Annual enterprise evaluations are important tools to not only list and appreciate accomplishments, but pinpoint where changes and new strategies may be helpful. Perhaps you attained a sales goal, but had more than your share of employee turnover. Or perhaps the new wholesale partnership you planned on didn’t materialize as you strategized. How you handled the difficult spots in the road may be your best accomplishments, even while working toward better operational flow for the coming year.
Training is one of the areas owners and managers identify as a path toward better overall accomplishments. The idea is, well-trained employees are able to work independently and solve problems, making for a more efficient workplace. Under-utilized training often leads to apathy on the job and absenteeism.
Sometimes accomplishments are gained through small, incremental steps. Working through a problem or difficult operational concern may take more time than you planned, but ignoring or procrastinating solving the problem can be costly on many accounts. The hole in the parking lot you have been meaning to fix trips up a customer, or the piece of equipment that isn’t working right causes bigger machinery to fail.
Small or large, accomplishments should be acknowledged whether through your own private sense of completion or with public celebration. Businesses celebrate milestones, anniversaries, employee triumphs, record-breaking sales, expansions and many other achievements. Accomplishments important to your business are the markers showing where you are doing well and have met your goals. They are also a means to reward family and employees who have helped you work toward success and profitability. And, it’s not just a means to brag about what you have done, because accomplishments demonstrate the ability to achieve or complete something that is vital to your business. Without accomplishments, your business will either stay where it is or begin to slowly decline.
Take some time to review your operation and identify accomplishments. Doing so is a good way to remind you, your family, partners, employees and customers what you have achieved throughout the year or selling season.
The above information is presented for informational purposes only and should not be substituted for professional business or legal counseling.