Wow, what a year 2020 has been! One that most of us probably want to forget. As we move into the new year, January is always seen as an opportunity for setting ourselves some new goals and ambitions.
You’ve probably already set yourself some personal new years resolutions, but what about setting some for your business? Think of your business resolutions as the goals you want to achieve during 2021. Having goals will help you stay motivated and focused on taking your business to the next level.
Here’s a few I’ve got on my list.
Out with the old and in with the new! Who doesn’t love a good declutter to start the year? Give your office a good clean up. Purge those piles of paper, shred what you don’t need and scan the ones you do. Having a nice tidy office will help you stay positive and focused during the workday.
But, organisation isn’t just about having a nice tidy office (although that does help). It’s also ensuring your processes are running smoothly. Take some time to review your processes. Go one better by writing some standard operating procedures (SOP’s). Ask yourself which tasks take you the most time – can you streamline or improve them? Use your findings to update your processes for 2021.
Update your systems
Technology makes everyday life so much easier! But are you using it to its full potential for your business? Are there any areas of your business that could benefit from an update? Or better still, automate!
If you have been raising invoices manually on an excel spreadsheet, look into software such as Xero. If you’re having trouble keeping track of new leads, a customer relationship management tool (CRM) like Dubsado will help you get organised. Or if you’ve just got a slow computer, it might be time to update it.
By updating your systems not only will you save time, but you also cut down the chances of any manual errors.
Share the burden
As a business owner, you’re probably also the accountant, social media manager, web designer and everything else that business needs to succeed. But no one can “do it all” without burning out in the end.
When it comes to outsourcing, consider which tasks you struggle with the most. Do creative tasks such as blog writing keep you awake at night? Are you unsure of how to file your taxes? Maybe you’re spending too much time on admin tasks?
As the saying goes, time is money. Your time as a business owner is valuable, so hiring a little extra help will free up some time in your schedule to do the things you love.
Understand your finances
Commit some time to start understanding your monthly, weekly and even daily numbers. Get a sense of the financial trends happening in your business.
Getting to grips with your finances will help you identify any areas to save money. Such as the subscription service you’ve not used in months. Or perhaps you have a particular customer who always pays late that needs addressing.
Create a simple spreadsheet to keep track of all your financial transactions or invest in accounting software. Don’t rely on the accountant who does your taxes to help you keep your business financially healthy – that’s your job!
Build a website
If you don’t already have a website, now is the time to invest in one. Now more than ever, people are choosing to shop online. Even if you’re not an eCommerce store, there are still many advantages to having a website.
It helps potential customers find you via search engines, builds brand awareness, provides people with contact information and gives you a place to showcase your skills/ work.
If you’re considering building a website or your current site needs a refresh, this post on ‘the value of an effective website’ is worth a read.
Raise your profile
When you’re swamped with work, it can be difficult to make time for anything that doesn’t add immediate value to your business. This is why a good business resolution for 2021 is to continue expanding your network.
You are your own best marketing tool! Start networking and putting yourself out there. Even if you only make one new connection every month, you will improve your chances of finding new leads, learning something new or just make a great new business friend.
Networking should be a priority rather than an afterthought. The more you network, the more results you will see. Block out some time in your calendar just like you do with your other business tasks.
Don’t get burnout
Returning to work after a refreshing break can be exciting. Whilst it’s great to capitalise on that newfound energy, it’s important to take time out for yourself and don’t overdo it.
It’s no secret that many entrepreneurs work themselves to the bone, but it’s impossible to sustain long term. Getting burnout is not good for you, or your business. Set some clear boundaries. Set an alarm to ensure you take regular breaks. Use calendar reminders to ensure you switch the computer off at a reasonable time.
If you want to give your business the best chance of success, you need to be healthy!
I hope these new year business resolutions have given you a burst of inspiration for the year ahead. Have a think about where you want your business to be one year from now. How will the resolutions and intentions for you set for this year will help you get there?
I’d love to hear what resolutions you set for yourself this year.