Life At The Top November 14, 2017

10 questions business leaders should ask themselves in 2018

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A new year is the perfect opportunity to reflect, analyse and improve. We all make personal resolutions and changes, but what about your business?

Refresh your business strategy and make 2018 your most productive year yet with these ten essential questions...

1. Are we attractive to the best talent?

With a thriving gig economy and record numbers of startups being founded (80 per hour in the UK in 2016, according to Startup Britain) it’s no surprise that companies are investing more in recruitment. But while finding talent might seem like the end goal, retention can be equally challenging. So how do you keep talent once you’ve found it?

Find out what it takes to retain talent by reading our in-depth investigation.

2. Is our recruitment process comprehensive and effective? 

Taking the time to find exactly the right candidate for a role will save you time and money in the future. Get it wrong and you could be back to sifting through CVs a few months down the line.

One way to ensure your recruitment process is more effective is by using psychometric testing.

We got the lowdown from Vistage member, Claire Edmunds, about her comprehensive recruitment methodology. Read more here.

3. Does my business have change at its heart?

Embracing change has always been pivotal to both success and innovation, but in this fast-paced age, ongoing development has become a do-or-die imperative. Whether you initiate change or not, outside factors like marketplace competition or advancements in technology will always force it to happen. Preparation is key to survival.

Making your business more agile and preparing for the unexpected makes it more likely you’ll weather any unexpected storms.

Here’s how to build change into your organisation.

4. Does my business promote a culture of success?

Creating a culture of success is about people; chiefly communication, appreciation and ownership. If you want everyone to work towards a common goal, you need to share that vision clearly so each employee understands their objectives. And make it a two-way system - ask your staff for regular feedback on their progress and how they feel things can be improved.

Find out more about how to create a culture of success with our informative article.

5. Is my business riddled with zombies?

As much as we hate to act as doomsayers, the answer is probably yes. A study by Gallup showed that only 17% of the UK workforce are actively engaged; 57% are not engaged and 26% are actively disengaged.

So how do you mobilise these ‘zombies’? By using the human touch.

6. Is my business as productive as it could be?

If the answer is no, there are simple steps you can take to improve productivity.

First of all, you need to establish the problem. Once you’ve found the underlying issues in your organisation, creating systems and solutions which are repeatable is essential for long-term maintenance. And, critically, creating a culture of positivity and reward is essential to improved employee productivity. When people are happy, they are more engaged and ultimately more productive.

Peter Jenner shares his expert advice on boosting productivity here.

7. Do I have the support I need to run my business?

Making decisions every day which affect your business and the welfare of others is difficult. Apart from the mental challenge, you can be left wondering if you’re heading in the right direction. An effective way to receive support and advice is a peer advisory group.

Read more about peer advisory groups here.

8. Have I got an exit plan?

While succession or exit planning can be a challenge in business, it is a necessity. Not only does planning avoid drama and anxiety later on, it will also make your business more attractive to prospective investors. To take the sting out of it, break it up into simple steps.

Follow Peter Jenner’s steps for a successful exit or succession strategy here.

9. Is diversity an important part of my business?

If the answer is no, then make it a priority to become a more diverse business in 2018.

While it’s often viewed as something which is required rather than something which elicits change, diversity can improve your business in many ways, one being profitability. A report from McKinsey shows that companies in the top quartile for diversity are more likely to have financial returns above their national industry medians.

Our article on diversity in business tells you everything you need to know.

10. Am I happy?

The billion dollar question. And perhaps the most important one. As much as we all try to keep our personal and work lives separate, it’s impossible for them to exist in isolation. So how do you stop one from damaging the other?

According to Shawn Achor, happiness fuels success, rather than the other way around.

Here are our top tips for happiness at work and home.

So, do you feel 2018 ready? Raring to go? If not, find out for yourself how Vistage is transforming today’s business leaders, apply now for your personal leadership consultation.

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Apply now for your personal leadership consultation with a Vistage Chair. They'll help you assess areas of strength of your business and identify areas of potential growth.

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