New Year, New Initiatives

The new year brings time to reflect on the previous year and finalize plans for the new one. It’s good to take the time to look back on the efforts put forth the previous year to help you plan the next. Small business owners are stretched in more ways than ever before. But opportunity doesn’t care. The challenge has to be met each year or risk falling behind! Here are a few tips to help you take action in the new year

1) Things I did that did not work out: It’s hard to face the facts but some initiatives we take don’t work as planned. But therein lies the value. You cannot find the “secret formula” without a healthy dose of failure. Instead, take time now to reflect. Make the hard decisions to cut your losses now, first. Everything else you do to prepare for a new year will be easy! Other initiatives just need adjustment, refinement or a new course set.

2) Things I meant to do but didn’t get around to: Plenty of good ideas don’t get to see the light of day for all sorts of reasons. This year, can you jettison tasks that take valuable time away from your initiatives? Chances are, you can outsource for less cost than you thought which could really make a difference. Revisit your list of things you didn’t get to do last year and prioritize the new list.

3) Short term, long term: Goals are important. They give the brain something to focus on. They are more easily accomplished when broken into bite sized pieces. Try it out the next quarter. It begins with the long term goal and is further broken down into monthly, weekly and daily. Without them, your business is a series of reactions without any actual rudder steering the ship.

4) Do something for yourself: Get educated. Volunteer. Exercise. Whatever was missing from your life last year must be included this year to ensure you have a next year!

5) It’s not always what you know but who you know: Make time to network with a purpose. If your business is local get involved. If your business is national, make plans to attend at least one major gathering. You can’t operate in a vacuum. Building a business via leveraging your network is a whole lot easier than cold calling your way through life!

As you can read, this post does not reveal some earth shattering news. Just good old fashioned organizational tips. You’ve probably heard them all before. But it’s good to revisit old “friends” from time to time and put them into context of what you are doing now… Make it a great year!

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