The New Year is a great time to give fresh thought to your business and how you want to improve it. Here are four practical resolutions for your business that you can tackle without fear of breaking them. With a solid plan in place, you can make sure these goals are accomplished throughout the upcoming year.
1. Invest in Education
Education is key to a successful business. A full degree program may not be necessary, but business owners can benefit from taking classes and certifications to keep them up-to-date in their industry, learn about new trends and learn new skills that they can integrate into their business.
Education is also key in helping employees grow and advance their careers. A Harvard Business Review study found that high achievers in the workplace often were not receiving career development support through training or education. If business slows down at the end of the year, this can be a great way to invest in education. Employees can pursue training opportunities that will help inspire them through the new year. These opportunities may also help attract talent in the New Year. At the same time, businesses can make last-minute investments and use these costs toward the current tax year, decreasing their tax liability in the New Year.
2. Implement a Social Media Strategy
Many business owners may set out to be more active on their social media accounts, or to get them in the first place. However, they often quickly drop this goal as business picks up.
Investing in social media is an important step for any business. It gives the business a way to reach thousands of potential customers. It also allows them to shape their digital reputation. Social media can help generate high-quality sales and build relationships based upon trust.
Social media use can be effectively integrated into your marketing campaign to provide even more direct results. You can ask customers about a new product line or idea and conduct your own market research before investing heavily in something that might not resonate with your customer base.
If you do not feel equipped to handle your own social media content, you can hire a person in-house or a willing college or high school student who can share your news and updates. Be sure you review everything before it posts, though, to protect your business.
3. Automate More Business Processes
Many people have the resolution to "have a better work/life balance." However, they don't fully think about how to make this possible. One surefire way to add more time to your day is to automate more business processes.
It might take you a little more time on the front-end to set up this process, but you will reap benefits for months and years to come. Automated processes allow you to deal with repetitive tasks in a more efficient way. For example, if you find that you are answering the same customer questions over and over again, you can prepare a FAQ page and refer customers there. You can also make YouTube videos to demonstrate your product and its uses. You can set up template emails to send to customers and to request quotes so that you are not making everything from scratch. Implementing automated processes can save you valuable time that you can give to your business or family.
4. Get Help from Others
Many business owners try to do everything themselves. They want to control every detail of their business and may not trust others to be able to competently handle certain tasks. However, this is more likely to lead to burnout. Getting help from others should be a key resolution to all over-achieving business owners. Mentorships and professionals can guide your business regarding issues like business development, finding credit options and branding your business.
Even if you don't do all four resolutions, doing just one can lead to more business and save your business money. And that's a great way to usher in the New Year.