A New Year—a chance to ring out the false and ring in the true. Everyone is committed to hitting the gym, running that race, quitting smoking, stepping into 2017 with confidence, style, and super great hair. But Resolutions aren’t just for personal improvement. Now is a great time to reflect on your business and think about how to make this year the best one yet.
Even if you never do get around to running that Boston Marathon, and even if you never see the inside of a gym after January, these resolutions will make all the difference for your small business in 2017.
1. My business will reconnect with former partners, customers, and clients
New Years is all about moonwalking forward. But how can you know where you’re going if you don’t reflect on where you’ve been? Take some time to reconnect with the people who helped you get through 2016. You don’t have to send everyone flowers and chocolates—a simple thank-you note shows your gratitude and your commitment to growing a relationship. Consider sending out a thank-you video, something that’s easy to do if you already have an email campaign underway. And if you don’t, consider taking on resolution #2.
2. I will improve my digital presence
Have you seen your business website lately? How about on an iPhone? An Android? A Tablet? If your website seems dated or glitches on mobile, then it’s definitely time to commit to an update. Also, how fresh is your content? Are there any promotions you’d like displayed? Your website is the face of your business. Stay foxy in 2017 with a new web design.
3. I will charge what I’m worth
Do you feel like you often don’t get paid what you’re worth? Perhaps your value isn’t being communicated effectively. Unless you stand out from competitors, you’ll end up competing on price and not value. Commit to revamping your marketing strategy, cultivating case studies that prove the quality of your work, and then raise your rates to reflect your real value.
4. My business will hold fewer long meetings
Meetings can be immensely unproductive. If you hold an hour meeting with 10 employees that’s 10 hours of productivity spent. That being said, oftentimes one meeting can take the place of a hundred ricocheting emails. Consider adopting the scrum approach. Begin each meeting with a clearly defined goal, and at the end assign concrete tasks to your employees. At Evilnut, we find that a ten minute meeting each morning is a great way to set priorities and goals. Don’t be afraid to set a timer. When the bell chimes, the meeting is adjourned no matter what.
Taking a break is not an extravagance; it’s critical if you want to keep your energy levels high and your focus sharp. Commit to taking real, quality breaks. No, scrolling through social media doesn’t count, and don’t even think about touching that email. Unplug and get moving. Taking a Sunday afternoon off to meander through a forest will help get your brain moving and let you return to the office with renewed energy. Setting limits on your working hours (I will not work past 8pm for example) will force you to be more productive while at the office.
When it comes to resolutions, we’re all incurable optimists. Standing on the threshold of a New Year, we can imagine ourselves at the far side of 2017: wealthy, lithe and lean, less smoky, with a confident smile, firm handshake, and truly fabulous hair. Sure, maybe we’re dreaming, but we’re not the only ones. Commit to these business resolutions, and make those pie-in-the-sky dreams a piece of cake.