Business Breakthrough: Trends and Forecasting
by Mike J. Agugliaro
Here’s something that happens all the time: We are in the summer months or in the winter months, and your business is going really well. Then, all of a sudden, you have a dip. And whoa! The sky is falling!
You know there is going to be a spring, winter, summer, and fall. You know that there is probably going to be dips and curves in business.
That’s your forecasting.
Now how do you forecast? First of all, you have to have some kind of system. Now, I don’t care if the system is just an Excel spreadsheet that tracks how many jobs you’re doing, how much revenue, or what type of jobs you’re doing at a certain time or month. Some kind of demand.
But over time, that’s going to give you some history. And those histories are going to be very valuable trends so that you can buck them. You can fight against it.
So here is what I challenge you to do. First off, look at the trends from the last two years if you have it. If you don’t, guess what? You have got to start tracking the trend today and guess at what is going to happen three months from now.
Now once you look at your trends, you’ll see the curves and when it’s about to dip. You want to plan your marketing strategy before that time.
I always tell people during the summer, “Guess what? Fall is right around the corner.” So if you want to lessen those pains, analyze the trends and forecast what is going to happen in the future. What do you see that might come? And then plan for that.
Now what happens if you don’t plan?
I hear it all the time. “I need more calls. I don’t have enough work for my guys.” Yea, that’s your fault! Because you are not forecasting and you aren’t looking at the trends.
The other thing is that these trends and forecasting need to be right in front of your face. Yea, that close! You have got to have a board or monitor. I hear all the time, “My computer software system will give me anything at the strike of a button.” Yea, but you’ve got to hit the button. And when do you hit the button?
When you hit the button, do you say “Oh, I see a trend there and this is what I am going to have to do.” Or do you hit the button and say, “Oh, that’s what’s going on today.”? Well, today is too late.
You need to focus on what happened yesterday and what that is going to look like one week, three weeks, five weeks head.
Ask yourself what are the important trends in your business that happen. And then what do you need to forecast so that you can take out the dips and keep it nice and level?
Imagine if you could take your business and just flat-line it through the entire year. Now I’m not talking flat-line like break even. I’m talking the same amount of business every day throughout the year. That would be pretty amazing. Because if every year, every month, every week was the same, then all I have to do is take it up a little bit and flat-line it again.
That’s kind of our goal in business: to take out those dips and curves and run it as flat as we can with as much revenue at that time.
So here is your business challenge of the day on this business breakthrough:
Examine the trends, forecast it, build a plan, involve your team. Let’s make more money and let’s serve more customers.
Mike Agugliaro, Business Ninja