Having completed my third and final Triathlon race on 10th September 2016, this time the middle distance event called “The Vitruvian” in Rutland, Leicester I am pleased to see how far I had come over the season.

I try where possible to reflect and use my experiences from my reasonably new found hobby of triathlon in my chosen profession of accountancy.  You may well say, how on earth can you do that, they are so very much apart but there are definitely lessons to be learned and benefits to be considered.

Here are just a few examples:

Goal setting – Vital, if you have no goal, you may as well not bother!! What results do you want? Do you know? Have you spent some quality time working out exactly what the right result looks like and written it down? Do you remind yourself of your goals regularly and do you adjust them along the way?

Analysis of progress, both good and bad – Many people just use their bank balance to judge if they are being successful or not.  It is a good indicator but does not tell the whole story.  Constant analysis of what is working and importantly, what is not working is the key to greater gains.

Small details make a big difference – I am always surprised at the races I attend at the way some competitors do not seem to practice the transition element of the races.  This is the part when you have to change from one discipline to the next. This is either from the swim and your wet suit onto your bike. Or from your  bike to your running shoes etc.  These parts of the race if practiced can gain you many places in the overall results and really for very little exertion, and when in a long old race this is great.  I had a classic example of this in this last race.  A fellow I had been pretty much swapping places with both in the swim and on the bike throughout the race came into transition before me off the bike by approximately 1 minute.  When I arrived in transition, I said to him, great bike mate well done. I proceeded to take off my bike hat swap my shoes and was gone.  He was still sat fiddling with his socks etc.  I looked his number up later and he had spent 3 ½ minutes in transition whereby I had been only 1 minute, a huge gain and no real effort.

Your business should be the same, analyse what you do and your processes, can it be done quicker?, is there a better way?

Get your self some expert help – Now people always question this one because there is always a cost involved.  But you should always look for benefits before looking at the costs, because I am certain that the benefits will always outweigh the costs.  I use a coach to help me plan, analyse and adjust my training.  In the space of 1 year I have gone from completing a middle distance race in 6 hours 30 minutes down to 5 hours dead in this last race.  This is as a direct result of being able to walk through everything with him and test what works and what does not.  I would not have had this level of improvement without him.

Business is no different, you need to find experienced people to have around you that you can trust have your best interests in mind and will be passionate about helping you achieve the goals you set yourself.  If you think accountants are there for just reporting your numbers to HMRC to meet a deadline and nothing more then you need to find a different accountant.  You need to get involved with one who can work along side you to help get those results you want.

I originally set up Best Accountancy to help start up business and love to see them not only survive but to thrive.  I love hearing about why people set up their own business and if any business owners wish to share their story with me I would love to hear from them.  (I am also happy to talk about Triathlon too!!)van logo