4 critical steps to a prosperous financial year
As the new financial year approaches, it’s an ideal time to review the past, reset the results and renew your goals for the upcoming year. Everything restarts from zero and we get to strive for better outcomes, for more fulfilling experiences and making changes for the better.
This year we are facing something truly special and unique. Australia is in recession for the first time in 29 years. The March quarter GDP fell by 0.3% and lockdown only began in mid-March, so it is feasible to imagine that June quarter data is going to be catastrophic. Of course, the decline is partially man-made, flowing from the decision to sacrifice rosy economic figures for human lives, so the data won’t reflect the true economic position we are in, but rarely have we felt so uncertain of the future as right now.
There’s no doubt we are sailing a small boat through a huge storm, but with challenges come opportunities and we will be working hard with our clients to help them identify where those opportunities can be found.
A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials – Chinese Proverb
We could be in for some trials folks, so lets face them in the best way possible. Anyone can do well in good times, but in hard times, those who are prepared and committed will prevail and prosper.
It doesn’t matter whether you are a business owner, wage earner or retiree, the following 4 key steps will help you be prepared and committed as the new financial year kicks into gear.
Reviewing the past is never the most exciting activity when you are facing challenges, but it is essential. Without getting too bogged down, take the time to ask and answer questions such as:
- What is my financial position compared with 12 months ago?
- What effect did Covid-19 have on my income?
- Are there specific segments of my income that are being affected and what can I do to mitigate or diversify?
- Did I enjoy the year? Why or why not? How can this change?
- What are the key things I would change?
- Plan and project
We are hearing a lot of negativity about planning in the current uncertain environment. Instead of trying to predict and project external events that are very uncertain, a good strategy is to start internally with your own needs and wants and set goals based on those. Whatever the external environment presents, you still have a life to live. Don’t forget to record your thoughts and answers as you go.
- How much do I need to earn?
- What options do I have to earn more or spend less?
- How much time do I want to spend with family or doing leisure activities?
- How many hours do I want to work?
- What do I need or want to change about my life?
- How can I develop as a person? What new skills, hobbies or interests do I want to embrace?
- Take action
You have completed the first 2 important steps and should have some goals for the year. But a plan is useless unless it is executed. It is time to prioritise the goals you have set, then create actions that need to happen for each one. Step by step, how can this goal be achieved?
Set time expectations to keep yourself on track and then get to work.
- Regular review
It’s now really important that you take time each month or quarter to review your action plan. Ask yourself the following:
- What actions were I supposed to complete from the action list? Did I do them?
- What do I have to do in the coming month/quarter? What could stop me doing that?
- Do any goals, plans or actions need to change due to external circumstances?
Now is the perfect time to be clear about what you need to achieve and why. By following this simple 4 step process, you have an opportunity to set yourself apart, protect your future and life your life to the fullest.