Why businesses need external accountability

23rd July, 2014


Being a small business owner can be tough. You’re pulled this way and that; there’s always far too much to do; the buck stops with you, and, unlike your team, there’s no one to call on for help or provide answers to the tricky problems!

And, of course, you can’t pack up and go home at the end of the day if the job’s not done. Due to this, small business owners tend to focus on the easy stuff, the daily minutiae of business life, which they can cope with. They may put their heads in a bucket of sand when it comes to the more difficult areas, perhaps declining sales, a difficult staff member, unpaid bills and future planning.

That’s why it’s very important for business owners to seek external accountability so they can tackle difficult issues and ensure their businesses thrive and survive no matter the economic climate. Accountability is defined as the obligation of an individual to account for his or her activities, accept responsibilities for them, and disclose the results in a transparent manner.

One effective way is to get a business mentor. Mentors help for several reasons:

  • They can look at your business objectively, whereas you can’t. They can immediately see things you are blind to.
  • They are (or should be) experienced and possess a number of business skills, and can therefore come up with good business ideas and strategies. They can also act as a sounding board for new plans.
  • They will be able to introduce you to others who can help you grow your business, maybe a good accountant or a marketing expert. They can even refer new business to you.
  • Very importantly, they can help you see the bigger picture, set goals and help you reach them.

Now before you say you can’t afford one, can you spare $150? Because that’s all you need in New Zealand to get many hours of great business mentoring over a two-year period, provided you have less than 25 employees and are trading.

All you have to do is to register with Business Mentors New Zealand, a non-profit body which has steadily grown to become the leading business mentoring service provider to small and medium enterprises in New Zealand. All the mentors are highly experienced volunteers.

So if your business is drifting and not performing, or you’re finding it difficult to adapt to change quickly enough, try adopting external accountability. Your future will suddenly look much better!