About frankcianciulli

Frank Cianciulli was born in Toronto, Ontario on November 29th, 1972. He holds a Bachelor in History and Political Science from York University (1997). Frank sits as President and CEO of The Streaming Network, the latest in a string of successful companies he has built from the ground up. In 2001, with six years of conferencing expertise under his belt, Frank co-founded and established Enunciate Conferencing. By design, this company would not only provision traditional conferencing services, but would also introduce next generation conferencing and collaboration services in anticipation of future market demands. Enunciate started off with the single most fundamental conferencing product of that time (reservationless audio conferencing), perfected it and then proceeded to launch one successful product after another. Within less than five years, Enunciate launched nine collaboration products founded upon leading-edge technology and impeccable customer service. Enunciate has been ISO 9001-2000 certified since 2003 and was the 1st conferencing provider in the world to attain ISO Certification, setting the bar for other CSPs. In 2007, Enunciate was named one of the Top 20 Best Small and Medium Employers in Canada. Queen's School of Business and Hewitt Associates ranked companies according to survey results, which were based upon employee opinions, organization practices and perspectives of the organizations' leadership teams. In addition, Frank was named one of Canada's Top 40 Under 40tm for 2006, which was presented by Caldwell Partners International and officially announced by the Global and Mail. He also received the 2007 New Generation Business Excellence Award from the Italian Chamber of Commerce of Toronto. Frank took the spotlight in Partners, the official Italian Chamber of Commerce. In 2006, Frank Cianciulli, won the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award (Emerging Entrepreneur - Ontario), in recognition of his extraordinary success at innovation, company development, financial performance, and personal commitment to his businesses and his community. In 2004 and 2005 Enunciate was listed as one of Profit Magazine's "Hot 50" Canadian companies. With the intention of replicating Enunciate's success, Frank co-founded PEOPLEsource Staffing Solutions with long-time friend and trusted colleague John Nalli. PEOPLEsource opened its doors in September 2003 and quickly put its expansion plan into motion. In three short years PEOPLEsource has grown from one branch office to six and has increased its gross revenue by over 300%. PEOPLEsource provides technology, engineering, finance, clerical and industrial staffing as well as on-site workforce management services. PEOPLEsource is one of the fastest growing recruiting firms in Canada and recently ranked 8th in the 2010 best small and

Creating Content, More Than Marketing

creating content

Smart business owners, especially those in the B2B space cannot continue to shelve the importance of content marketing. Since it is one of the most time consuming items on a company’s marketing list and one that requires constant dedication, content marketing unfortunately ends up on the back burner on a list of ‘to dos’.

As an entrepreneur, you have tons unique content, input and insight that can be used to develop content marketing pieces. We have focused a lot more of our efforts on this here at the companies under the Wish Group. Each new piece of content is not only aiding in achieving content marketing goals like becoming thought leaders and a key source for information to help move prospects through the buying cycle but is working internally to create a new stream of momentum and excitement within the teams. Sales teams are excited to have something new to share with their clients and prospects as well as on their social media. Marketing is motivated to continue putting out pieces that teams can get behind, and finally the business owners and managers themselves are inspired to review, and compile valuable content to share with the market.

A recent review of The Streaming Network, the virtual events specialists here at the Wish Group revealed a high performance year overall with some amazing numbers with regards to webinars run and engagement. The statistics were turned into an easy to read infographic which will become one of the new pieces of content for the upcoming website as well as something that can be shared by the Sales team s when speaking to prospects and clients.

tsn year in review

If you’re still a bit behind on content marketing find the key people on your team that can help formulate the structure of your strategy. From there you’re going to need to start compiling and organizing useful, helpful and marketing related material to start sharing. There are a number of ways to do this, here are a few that have proven successful for us.

Infographics

Infographics are a great and simple representation of basic to very intricate statistics that otherwise may be overwhelming for your audience to engage with. I find that they are also great pieces of visual support for presentations used across the organization.

growth of infographics
https://blog.kissmetrics.com/12-infographic-tips/

Case Studies

We use a lot of case studies for work at the Mike Agency where the information lends itself to the format. Showcasing our skill set at the agency by focusing on how we were able to take a client from step one to completion is another piece of content that not only serves its purpose for digital marketing but also for pitches and presentations.

mike agency case study

Webinars

As you saw with The Streaming Network infographic, webinars are on the rise and Canadian companies are beginning to use them to deliver even more categories of content including training and corporate communications. Webinars are another popular form of content marketing for us here at the Wish Group.

Once you have your content, finding the right medium to deliver it with becomes an easier task. Good luck with starting, nurturing and growing your content marketing strategies and have a great week!

Frank.

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Your website is your best friend

your website is your best friend

Whether you’re an entrepreneurial start up or been in business for generations, having a clear, concise and easy to navigate website can be the deciding factor for a customer considering your product or service.
Now, I’m sure while many of you are likely thinking, “that seems pretty obvious”, the fact is that there are many businesses that continue try and get by without optimizing their sites whether it be with regards to SEO, mobile
compatibility or simple navigation.

smartphone
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The most common issue seems to still be relevancy and updating of sites. I’m not talking about changing an address or adding a new executive I’m talking about keeping up with changes in SEO, updates with social media platforms and the most important, ensuring your site is responsive to all devices including tablets and mobile devices.

mobile website increased sales

Although having to keep a keen eye on your site can seem tedious keep in mind it is still your most effective tool when competing in today’s global environment. Here are some key reasons why.

Maximize Your Spend

There are limited surprises when it comes to the cost of your website and web updates. Unlike day to day business a quote on building your site or hours required by internal resources remain fairly steady once you’ve been presented with the work back plan and overall strategy. Further to that you can also cut costs with an effective website whether that is in marketing, sales, communications or HR by ensuring key messages are clear and concise and your SEO strategy provides high ranking in searches.

Never Close the Doors

While your business may close at some point each day, your website provides 24/7 visibility. This means that your company can be researched when a potential client is ready to find out more. If online sales are part of your strategy, you’re basically never closed and your overall increase in revenue is a direct result of your effective site.

Credibility

This is where transparency can lead to the credibility required to help increase your overall sales. You may have a stellar product with star sales and implementation staff but the problem could be as simple as website not telling this story effectively to the market.

first impressions
quote3

As you all already know, word of mouth is a huge driver of business and your site is a great place to house this actual feedback from customers for other potential customers to read. Although it may take a bit of work, working with key clients to build testimonials and reviews for your site will help increase your credibility while also further helping to boost your online rankings.

Content Marketing

Right, so your Marketing department likely has tons of content. The trick becomes balancing this content with a budget and trying to get it into the hands of your potential client base. Your website however, provides an unlimited amount of space to share this content and also to garner leads with both gated and ungated content. Allowing visitors to share content on social media via your site can take your engagement up tenfold and in turn open the door to an even larger potential customer base. Blogs are also a proven tactic to help increase sales via content.


quote4

The Mike Agency, the design agency here at Wish Group continues to now work with clients on the next phase of blogs –vlogs.

According to GlobalWebIndex, 42% of internet users say they have watched a vlog within the last month with the majority of vlog viewers( 93%) watching them on YouTube.

All in all, it cannot be ignored. If you’re a business that wants to increase sales, you need an effective website. If you’re a business that wants to educate the public, they want to consume this information online. If you’re getting business in the door and feel that you don’t need a site, think about what you’re missing out on. The question is no longer “do we need a site?” but rather “how are we going to get the most out of our site?”

Have a great week!

Frank.

Culturally Speaking

Culturally Speaking

When speaking to new recruits what do you tell them about your company? While you may talk through structure, history, clients, products and services during your interview process, one of the main sections that seems to be left out is the discussion on culture. If someone is willing to make your business part of their lives, and spend the majority of their time in your offices, what can they expect to be walking in to?

The idea of all work and no play is best left to scary movies while the thought behind what makes your organization unique, attractive to new prospects and a great place to work for your current teams is something that should be addressed if not already.

Flexibility

One of the most competitive factors for recruitment in the past few years has been flexibility. Things like summer hours or working from home have been around for years but the bar has risen once again. The most recent example of flexibility has come from companies like Netflix with regards to maternity and paternity leave. Aside from making huge splashes in the media and garnering new recruits through no additional costs, the company also made a large statement about what it means to work at the company and how they value their employees and their families. With collaboration services, like the ones offered here at Evolve Collaboration, one of the Wish Group companies, joining calls from the road, vacation, or home are a no brainer and where required video conferencing is also available. Offering the right tools to allow for increased flexibility can work together to create a very distinct cultural change for an organization.

Professional Development

I remember about ten or so years ago when getting your company to pay for your MBA or professional accreditation was a huge incentive to join an organization. In today’s environment there are a number of other ways to also build professional development into your culture. Showing the importance of developing your teams speaks volumes both internally and externally and can create a powerful team of loyal team members in the company. Some great ways to do this include lunch and learn series’, employee presentations, paid external workshops and also taking advantage of membership perks from associations the company is part of that may be offering up similar learning opportunities.

Social Responsibility

One of the main reasons for anyone staying with an organization is the personal pride they feel when telling others where they work. Social responsibility is huge here at Wish Group and plays a big role in bringing the team together outside of work related projects. I had posted about our Holiday Wish initiative in December which is just one example of how employees can get involved in something bigger that ends in a positive feeling that is created from working together. You can go as small as organizing a day of volunteering at a local food bank or not for profit event, to raising funds as a team for an upcoming marathon to building out a full not-for-profit arm of the business.

Your organization is like a country and your employees its citizens. We’re proud to be Canadian for number of reasons and unique for those same reasons. Similarly in your companies, I think that it is critical to foster the same identity allowing for not only a balanced environment that encourages growth, competition and rewards but also one that provides an additional level of personal pride for coming in and contributing to the vision day in and day out.

Until next week.

Frank.

Power of Video for Your Business

power of video for your business

The strength of video has been ever present, but it is only in the last few years or so that I began to actually see the powerful presence that video holds with regards to social media marketing and promoting a brand, company or service.

While I find videos generally interesting as a medium to share life stories I began to really get interested in how video was able to boost my business here at the Wish Group. The reports and surveys that have been done by various market experts continue to surprise as not only do videos continue to prove to be effective with B2C businesses but are just as important to B2B businesses.

Video Marketing Infographic
Video Marketing Inforgraphic

It seems like a no brainer given the accelerated ramp up of Youtube and advertising spend on the online property but I am constantly floored by the number of colleagues that I talk that either haven’t embraced the power of video or like many, may understand the need for more video content but don’t know where to get started.

It has been this trend and growing popularity that led to the recent launch of our newest endeavour here at the Wish Group, specifically with The Streaming Network. The Streaming Network Studio was built to provide these short format videos to businesses looking to address a number of video content needs. Aside from being a full production house that can take clients from concept to production and final product in about 48 hours, they also provide a the full experience at one flat rate making this a hugely budget-friendly option for any business.

Cisco recently reported that by 2017, video will account for 69% of all consumer Internet traffic and that consumers who view video ads on a mobile device are 3 times as likely to click through. When considering video in your business the question is no longer if you can afford to create good video content, it’s more about how and when can ensure to get this done?

Aside from these growing trends there are a number of other facets that video content can address for a business.

Testimonials

Word of mouth has always been the best source of business. I actually have business partners and contacts that rely almost entirely on referrals to drive their small businesses. Taking it to the next level can be done with video testimonials and focus on what one single person truly enjoyed about your particular service or product. Reading a 300 word post will receive much less attention than a 30 second video that is easier to digest as well.

Social Media

All of the social media platforms allow for video and there’s a reason for that. Again there is a huge benefit available to businesses that get on board.

Video Marketing Infographic

A Great Way to Tell A Story

While the market place will be seeing a lot more video content coming from the companies here at the Wish Group I have been using the tactic in segments to tell the market about what we do here and have seen a much higher engagement than when I send out an email campaign or create a post.

I also use video internally to share the month’s review and key notes with the entire team –making it easy for employees to catch up on what’s happening across the company without having to read through a 500 email. In the last six months of introducing this to the teams we’ve seen an instant increase in open rates and engagement!

The numbers clearly speak for themselves, and clearly they are not to be ignored. If there’s one thing I want to stress this week it’s to really think about building a video content strategy into your business and when considering budget, don’t bulk this into marketing alone. There is so much more value available here. From recruitment, to public relations to building corporate culture and social media value there are endless opportunities to grow your business with the power of video.

The Right Fit

The Right Fit

Every enthusiastic business owner wants to hit the ground running as they serve up their new product or service to a market place of hungry consumers.

One of the most critical aspects to ensuring a smooth run is having a team of key players on board. This however, is much easier said than done.

Attracting prime talent is something that many entrepreneurs may find themselves patiently waiting on as they continue to build the reputation of the company across relevant stakeholders and the market at large.

Our staffing agency Peoplesource, part of Wish Group, focuses on taking care of this onerous task for thousands of employers and even top recruiters agree that timing is key.

When your company hits that ‘sweet spot’ however, you’ll start to see the shift take place. The once highly sought after contacts that you spent your time trying to convince to join your vision will be the ones that begin to take notice and reach out to you.

With that said, getting to his ‘sweet spot’ however, takes time and persistence. Remember you’re building a business, building customer and you’re also building an image in the market. There are a number of tactics you can actively apply as you continue to grow into the company that you want to be.

It’s All About the Employee

Successful companies actively invest in building out their employee programs and experiences as well as build a full PR plan behind promoting it. Google is a great example where you can find posts and articles around their incentive programs or read up on the positives of working for them on their Careers page.

Reach Out

LinkedIn is an incredibly powerful tool when it comes to networking and recruiting. Taking the time to search out best in class performers for specific areas requiring growth or leadership in your organization can present a very short list of potential candidates that are worth connecting with personally.

I’ve had a lot of success with this and have recently seen the time I’ve spent over the last ten years speaking with one such individual come to fruition.

After many years of informal discussions a good friend and colleague, Ben Lirangi has joined us as Director of Business Development. The Streaming Network offers leading technology marketing tools to the Canadian market place and is ready to move to its next level with Ben coming on board to address a new vertical for the organization.

Create a Positive Image

Aside from talking about how great it is to work at your organization a lot of your prime talent is going to consider the overall image of the company in the market. Large companies like Volkswagen who is still dealing with the emissions scandal or Chipotle Mexican Grill under fire for E. Coli are not likely to see a line of talent knocking at the door. Big or small, the day to day operations of your company will inevitably affect the type of talent you’ll be able to bring in the door-something additional to consider when allocating budgets to marketing and advertising as well.

As you continue to grow and create positive engagement with the market and key recruits you’ll find the momentum building. My one piece of advice is to never stop trying to find the right people to fit – they’ll eventually see the light!

Frank.

Persistence -Easier Said than Done

persistence

Many of you likely have New Year’s resolutions. Statistics show that of the 3 in 10 Canadians that made resolutions this year, that a whopping 73% will actually break them.

The key issue with setting resolutions, regardless of how simple or daunting they may be is that lack of persistence, especially in the first few months. This is no different than the day to day life of an entrepreneur.

Does this look familiar?!

day in the life

Well rest assured you’re not alone! Where you will stand solo however, is if you’re actually waiting for motivation to find you and toss you back on the path to persistence.

My recommendation-create your own ways to ensure that you stay on path and keep looking at the big picture even on the the hardest of days. Trying to get to your end results by shortcutting or trying to rush through something is not going to necessarily satiate your appetite for success. Think about trying to lose weight and instead of staying the course of eating right and excersing that you start taking the latest weight loss pills. Sure you’ll see results in the first few weeks but that’s likely your water weight. What happens after that?

Here are some ways to stay focused and persistent in your day to day efforts of reaching your bigger goal.

Birds of a Flock Fly Together

There’s a reason for this. People with the same mindset, work ethic, motivation and positive attitude as you will help keep you afloat on the days where you can hardly keep youself above water. In many cases these are also the type of people that will actually be able to understand what you’re talking about! Seeing what others like you are doing in the market, industry or world at large can serve as inspiration for other great ideas as well as possible synergies down the road. I had mentioned the importance of networking in a blog a few weeks ago and how doing so can also work to align you with people of the same mindset.

Learn Something New Every Day

I am hard pressed to go a day here at Wish Group without learning something new. Some of it may not be business related but you’d be surprised how much can be applied to busienss in some way or another!

reading exercise
No real surprise-the best way to learn especially for a busy entreprenuer like you is to read. Anything can be sourced at the tip of your fingers and much of this content is free.

Finish Lines Are Important

While you may be very focused on one major business goal – launching a new product, attaining a new client or creating a new campaign, I find it extreamly beneficial to have more than just one goal on the horizon.

One of the major reasons for losing momentum and persistence is that the win is far from being realized and motivtaion is based on wins. I try and set other goals, smaller or different in nature that I can feel good about realizing as I continue to make my way to the pot of gold.

Many entreprenusers find satisfaction in simply attaining a goal but something that can acutally be phyicslally enjoyed never hurts whether it be a new suit that you’ve been eying or something as simple as a night off with your signficant other and a good bottle of wine.

Plan To Succeed

Although excitement can take over, don’t over promise in hopes to win faster. This is a trap many people I speak to fall into even before setting out on their goal.

Think through the various aspects that will affect each of your dates like deliverables from external resources, market changes and yes, even holidays (just because we never stop working doesn’t mean the rest of the world doesn’t!)

Once you’re comfortrable with your schedule work towards attaining those dates but as you know, likey too well, things change every day. Try and stay flexible where it makese sense so as to not lose your persisitence every time a challenge presensets itself.

Last but not least –

never give up

Have a great week.

Frank.

What’d You Learn Today?

whatdyoulearntoday

We recently celebrated our 2016 kickoff event where everyone at Peoplesource, Mike Agency, Streaming Network and Evolve Collaboration joined the Wish Group corporate team for a two day getaway.

During this time we not only celebrated milestones and discussed targets but more importantly began to learn how each individual employee could personally improve to not only benefit the company but themselves.

The professional learning this time around focused heavily on the undeniable power of social media and how it fits into the content marketing strategy for each company for the year ahead.

For months we have been trying to get the team to buy in and my frustration with why we hadn’t been harnessing the fairly low cost and highly targeted tactic to form a larger network on LinkedIn was growing. It wasn’t until getting in a room and prepping for kickoff that it was suggested that a tutorial style approach may be the way to go.

Post kickoff and that very session, it became apparent that the issue wasn’t that the team thought it was a waste of time, the issue was that they didn’t understand just how effectively it could be used to inevitably save time as well as meet overall organizational goals.

This is just one example of the importance of building learning into corporate culture, especially in a small and medium size business where everyone is sitting in the same office space day in and out.

Taking away the expectation that everyone should simply know how to conduct certain aspects of business puts the team at ease, allowing them to let their guards down and open their minds to learning something new.

Regardless of what you need your employees to learn about, building a full plan for execution will ensure that you or your senior management team has a flushed out path to follow, pulling team members on as they move forward.

Consistency

repetition_wishgroup

With the crazy environment that is characteristic of any small business it becomes extremely easy for something like learning how to optimize social media engagement to fall down the list of priorities behind sales calls, meetings and fulfilment of orders. Ensuring that employees continue to hear more about the topic that you’re trying to teach them about however, ensures that this remains top of mind even though it may not be the most important thing on their list. Down time and off time become easier to fill now that they recall the need to update themselves on the latest installment of information sent around. Secondly, keeping consistent shows legitimacy with regards to the importance that it holds within your organizational plans. People start believing in things the more they hear about it and it’s your job to make sure it doesn’t fall off the wayside.

Why Should I Care

As with anything else in business, the real question is “why should I care?” Your marketing messages answer that question for potential customers. Your Sales team is trained to answer that question for leads. You ask it of suppliers almost every day, so why would it be any different in this case? Build in the benefits of the new learning initiative and explain how your employees are not only going to be able to operate better at their jobs but how this will help them on a personal level as well.

Winning

Once you have people on board show wins to keep the momentum going. Results that reflect either a happy customer, an employee accomplishment or a change in the overall company’s performance are great ways to show the learning in action. Spending time on something that works becomes an easier sell down the road and acknowledging these wins will in turn build learning ambassadors down the road to help integrate learning throughout the organization at the peer level as well.

Best of luck and I hope the year ahead is full of new lessons learned.

Frank.

Networking. Worth the Investment.

networking

It seems that with small businesses that the costs of investment never ends. Equipment, technology, human capital, and so on. The one thing that doesn’t show up on the income statement however, is investment of your personal time towards growing your business. The line item I like to attribute to this is networking.

Taking the time to attend business networking events that may follow seminars, conferences or be held as one offs by various organizations opens the door to a number of gains that extend way past the obvious which is increasing your pool of potential clients.

If you consider the gains and weigh them against the costs which in most cases is mainly your personal time, why any business owner would not actively plan for networking events is beyond me.

Get Connected

Like Richard Branson said, “Succeeding in business is all about making connections.”

This is true with anything in life but especially so with businesses and entrepreneurs. Connecting with colleagues within in the same market space as you enables you to learn about other technologies, products, services, best practices, trends and both wins and losses as experienced by those in the same boat as you.

The Mike Agency, a Wish Group company recently created a program directed specifically at promoting this basic idea amongst its client base. With the Get Connected program, clients are showcased monthly and encouraged to share a product or promotion with other clients that are part of the agency. It’s a great way to start a conversation in a relaxed environment amongst a tight group of potential connections.

New Business

What better way to sell your company or learn about other investment opportunities than with conversations amongst those that literally live and breathe their business day in and out? Sharing stories, outlooks and broad strategies in a relaxed environment over a glass of good wine is a great way to drive new business opportunities for your organization while also identifying synergies that can make sense to build on in the future.

Get Noticed

The more you attend industry specific or related events, the more you’ll become part of the patchwork that makes the market what it is. Remember, business owners are not the only ones attending these events. In many cases you may see media, industry watch dogs and government officials as well which inevitably means more face time for you to sell your business as the best. The long term goal is to be regarded as an expert in the field and eventually be the person they come to for their content, ideally boosting your profile further while building your network base even further.

As we all gear up for a fresh and exciting year ahead, take the time to think about how you can plan to allocate some of your time to networking events. Take a look through and try and diversify by type of event as well to optimize the diverse groups of people that you’ll be spending your time with.

Good luck and hopefully we’ll run into each other sometime!

Frank.

Holiday Wish Come True

submission

We’re days away from Christmas and even without the snow the buzz is definitely in the air. Here at Wish Group we’re feeling even more in the spirit than usual. I had blogged about my thoughts on the importance of corporate giving a few weeks ago and talked about open submissions to our Holiday Wish contest for 2015. The goal was for Wish Group to be able to give back in a way that we felt would make a real impact on someone’s life.

We received an amazing number of entries from people who wanted to nominate themselves, friends and family. Each and every story was full of heart, compassion were all deserving. After much contemplation and review by the entire team of presidents we were able to select our winner Paul Totten at United Way, a valued conferencing client of Evolve Collaboration.

Paul had nominated his co-worker Nicole Graham who was in much need of some holiday cheer. We could not be happier to have been able to help him send Nicole home to her family.

With last minute work that inevitably takes up the final few days in the office, it is easy to get bogged down and sidetracked from the spirit of the season. Our way to stay reminded of everything we hold so close to our hearts is to share this initiative organization wide which includes our extended team of valued clients and contacts. It has worked to strengthen our corporate culture, create a real sense of team and brought a personal level of pride in the company for each individual that is part of Wish Group.

From all of us at Streaming Network, Mike Agency, Evolve Collaboration and Peoplesource, I would like wish you all a very happy holiday season and successful 2016.

Frank.

Your Best Teacher is Your Last Mistake

Your-Best-Teacher-is-Your-Last-Mistake

I can’t believe it’s almost 2016! There are a number of exciting new initiatives lined up for the various companies here at Wish Group and we’re rearing to get moving with the New Year around the corner.

With that said, the focus right now is on reflecting on the year passed-how else can we effectively decide how to proceed into the future? I find that this is a major issue for many entrepreneurs (who may be operating as solopreneurs) where go go go means no time to think, reflect, strategize and plan for the coming years.

Huge mistake! It can be cumbersome but if you can implement a process the following years will fall into place and more importantly, your strategies and operations will become more transparent to your teams allowing them to be more efficient and proactive as well.

For us there are a number of key areas to review aside from sales and the bottom line. The largest of these areas is of course, expenses. Where can we optimize, where was money spent, where are the opportunities for cross promotion and where do we need to invest in order to meet objectives.

My biggest piece of advice –be honest with yourselves as a team, department and organization. For example, if you wanted to collect 90% of receivables by quarter’s end and you’re at 60% because of lack of manpower it is a clear indication that you have to replace resources or add to your workforce because the workload may simply be too heavy. It is definitely the one area that small businesses want to spend the least amount of time and money on but without the right team in place the business will not operate at its max. If resources or time to source these resources are an issue our team at Peoplesource can help. Based on your budgets our agency can save time and reduce the hassle of hiring while finding the perfect match for part time, full time and contract opportunities.

Another key area to consider is technological advancements and how you fared over the past year as well as how you’re planning to deal with the affects or opportunities for your business in the coming years. Are there any tools that you didn’t utilize that would have helped increase overall business efficiency or reach goals? Here at Wish Group we finally implemented HootSuite for our internal businesses as well as for our Mike Agency clients. Using this application allowed the team to engage with various groups in an organized manner as well as create a manageable process in house.

Remember that although you may have started out with a plan for the business that change is inevitable. Direction, competition, the exchange rate and global business policies are not stagnant meaning neither is your business plan.

It is important to have your key executives and team members get together to reflect on what the business did in the past year compared against the original plan the year before and where you had to diverge. For example take a look at the ongoing issues that Chipotle is currently having with E. coli breakouts and the focus on building their food safety policies. Not something they banked on having to deal with and something that they need to now work to address with all of their locations. These areas of adaptation can help to dictate what may be coming up as well as shed light on pre planning for changes that occur in the year ahead.

In an entrepreneurial environment where there never seems to be an end in sight, consciously taking the time to sit down, lay it all out and plan for the coming years can seem cumbersome. If there is one thing I can say about this it is to find a way to build some momentum and motivate yourself and your teams to commit to doing this. It will be the most important thing you can do for your business all year. Like Thomas Edison said, “Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration!”

Good luck!
Frank.