David Kenney: 3 New Realities For Business In 2021
Renowned for his experience as an accountant and business advisor, David Kenney knows what it takes for a business to grow strategically. Having helped thousands of companies surpass what they thought was possible, he now sits down and shares the success tactics required to excel in 2021. As my personal and business accountant, I know first-hand that David is the best in the biz and hope you enjoy his incredibly helpful insights.
As one of Australia’s most reputable and capable strategic business advisors, David Kenney, says there are some important realisations operators need to be aware of as 2021 unfolds.
This comes following the global COVID-19 outbreak which stopped the world in 2020 at an alarming rate that no one was immune to, not even David himself.
“At one stage I was going to bed at 1am every morning and getting up at 6am. I was constantly looking at strategy, law change and understanding all of the different noise that was coming at us every day,” he says on the Wealth Faculty Podcast.
Having now resurfaced to a somewhat new reality, David says business owners need to be prepared for how to succeed in 2021.
IT’S NOT GOODBYE TO FACE-TO-FACE HUMAN INTERACTION
Last year certainly accelerated learning for most – if not all – Australian businesses. It taught a lot of entrepreneurs how to adjust and move quickly through the digital space to continue offering a service.
However, as David notes, this doesn’t mean that in 2021 the need for human interaction is no longer there.
“All the people that say there won’t be offices anymore…I don’t subscribe to that,” David says.
“We’ll still need to gather, to collaborate, meet, and have real connections.”
Of course, we’re likely to see companies scaling down their physical operations but this should only be done if it makes sense for the organisation. The key is knowing how to keep communications strong in a digital landscape and determining which systems in your business perform better under a personalised touch.
Keep in mind that what worked for you last year when jobs HAD to relocate online doesn’t mean that those systems will continue to thrive moving forward. Ensuring you still have a meaningful level of human touch will make a huge difference in pivoting your business in 2021.
QUESTION WHERE YOU CAN DO BETTER
“Every good business looks at where it’s going and how it can do better,” David says.
How can you add more value to your customers? Are your systems good enough? Are you strategically heading in the right direction? It’s a constant conversation for business owners to be questioning these things.
The best way to determine where each branch of the company can grow is to look at the needs of your major stakeholders.
- Customers – they want to know how much you can give them
- Shareholders – they want to establish how much value they can extract out of your business
- Suppliers – they need to know where you draw the line with how you will negotiate
- Staff – they want to ensure you only attract the best people and keep them satisfied
Being able to get the right mix of everything takes dedicated time and a commitment to ongoing learning. However, when you truly understand how to ask the right questions, you’ll be able to work out what’s right for your business.
IF YOU’RE RUNNING THE SHOW, YOU HAVE TO BE ACROSS THE NUMBERS
Cash flow profit is not linear – it’s messy and requires constant work to keep delivering value to your customers with a product that works. However, it’s becoming all too common amongst some business owners that the numbers fall within the finance team and it stops there.
“A lot of people will say, ‘That’s something my CFO or accountant does’, but a good CEO understands how it all comes together,” David says.
Without being formally trained in finance, it can feel overwhelming or even scary to make sense of the numbers. However according to David, it shouldn’t be that way.
“I spend a lot of time with people trying to educate them, rather than offering to do it for them. It’s important they learn because it will help them to make better decisions, move faster and lessen mistakes,” David says.
The truth is if you’re a business owner you have a responsibility around the money, which means you have to educate yourself at all levels to understand it. Yes, you may have a team that handles certain things for you, but when you’re equally informed, you’ll be able to see why certain decisions are important and how to make them based on all the information you have.
2021 IS A NEW YEAR – TREAT IT LIKE SUCH
While there have definitely been successful and innovative changes made by organisations due to COVID-19, it’s important to remember that the same model you relied on last year will not necessarily be the best way to structure your business this year.
In order to thrive you need to be ahead of the game and understand what your stakeholders will need from you moving forward. As a leader, this means asking yourself and your team the right questions now to proof for the future.
By Jason Whitton
Group CEO Positive Real Estate
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