Currently operating no different than most SMEs, I never pause to question myself the effectiveness of the way I study.
It is because I'm only thinking about surviving, indeed without goals and strategies, I lack direction and focus.
I can benchmark myself with others, see how high they all fly, but that does not make me understand the path to get there.
I can opt for self-assessment, it gives another view of how to get there (your destination not others') since it is tied with strategies, it objectively defines the course of actions that can be tailored specifically for me.
It could be harder doing it yourself than following some standard guidelines that tell you exactly what to do, what to fix.
I feel that self-assessment needs more input, creativity and initiation from the users than other methods.
It is harder to follow because there is no right or wrong, and the hardest part is the start,
until you realise that it actually reflects strategies of your business, then you know where to start.
First thing first, understand business strategies....
understand what you want to achieve.
set direction, measure it, then review it.