After the Olympics, is it time to put your business through its paces?

It takes dedication to come home with a gold medal, and the same could be said for small business success. Research, set clear goals and adapt accordingly

Sadly, the Rio Olympic Games are over. The last two weeks have ended years of training for those competing, and planning and careful budgeting for the organisers. Team GB had their best over Olympics on foreign soil, and beat the overall medal tally achieved at London 2012. Key to their success? A well thought out long-term strategy that is strictly adhered to. What lessons could your business learn from their approach? Now is the perfect time to put it through its paces.

The Olympics has a fixed date, and therefore something very tangible for athletes to focus on and build up to. Could you set similar goals for your business? Think about yourself and what you want to achieve – then set a date for the time you will do it by. This could be to double business revenue by the end of the financial year, or start exporting to customers in the US by December 2017. Make the goals clear and measurable so you can track your success.

An athlete would not be able to compete successfully without gruelling training schedules. This is planned years in advance and involves a combination of scientific and physical preparation, going far beyond what they need for the event itself. Distance runners, such as “double-double” Olympic champion Mo Farah, will spend several years building base mileage, core strength and cardiovascular excellence before advancing to more focused training for their 5,000- or 10,000-metre events. When it comes to your business, look to achieve your long-term goals by setting a series of shorter-term objectives, such as upgrading your fleet management software to improve efficiency and your profit margin.

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