We’ve taken the top ten New Year Resolutions that individuals make and re-imagined them as a Top 10 Business New Year Resolutions list, so you can adapt these ideas for your own business next year.
10 Ideas to Inspire Your Business New Year Resolutions
Nearly half of all Americans will make some type of New Year Resolution in the weeks to come, and it’s likely that this number includes thousands of business owners who will set goals not only for their personal lives but on behalf of their businesses as well. We thought it would be interesting to take a closer look at the list of top 10 New Year Resolutions people make each year but apply them to business, instead, so you can use them to quick-start your own business New Year Resolutions.
Top 10 Business New Year Resolutions
- Lose Weight
What is weighing your business down, making it unhealthy or keeping it from looking its best? Where is your business “overweight?” The answers to these questions can bring up tough subjects.
For a business, losing weight might mean that it’s time to ask a staff member who isn’t suited for your organization to move on or it might require a significant investment of time and resources to improve the customer experience, re-imagine policies and procedures, remodel or renovate.
Losing weight isn’t easy; not for a person and not for a business. If you’re willing to put in the hard work that it takes, it’s worth it, and it is what is best for your business.
- Get Organized
Where is your business inefficient? What tasks need doing that you have been putting off? Whether you need to set aside time for strategic planning or put your plan into effect, make sure that you put deadlines on your action items and allow for time in the New year to get them done.
- Spend Less, Save More
Running a lean business doesn’t mean that money won’t be spent, it means that money won’t be spent without good reason. Over time, it’s probable for any business to have superfluous expenses that can be pared back or eliminated in order to increase reserves or reinvest in more productive ways. Reviewing vendor and supplier contracts on an annual or periodic basis and allowing for competitive bids can help you reduce expenses or get more value for the money you’re spending.
As you look for ways your business can save money, keep this idea of value in mind. Rather than merely cutting expenses, make sure that you are receiving maximum value for the money that you spend in terms of results, return on investment or another measure.
- Enjoy Life to the Fullest
Is running your business enjoyable? How about working there? Enjoying life to the fullest is among the top five New Year Resolutions your customers and staff will be making this year, so it stands to reason that all of the hours someone spends at work have a significant impact on whether this can be achieved. Although it is not incumbent upon an employer to provide an enjoyable experience for its employees and customers, the best ones do.
- Stay Fit and Healthy
A business can have lots of sales and still not be healthy; likewise, it can be very lean but still be unhealthy. Business health can be negatively affected by many factors; such as:
- Inadequate cash flow
- Poor profit margins
- Bad reputation
- Poor company culture
- Lack of a long range plan or guiding vision
Even if just one area of a business is unhealthy, the whole business may suffer as a result. As a business owner, you need to understand how the different parts of your business work together to create the healthiest whole. For instance, understanding the balance between pricing, profit margins and cash flow can help you improve the financial health of your organization.
- Learn Something Exciting
Trade shows, conventions, seminars, sales presentations, books, videos, classes, workshops, and networking events can all be the means of learning something new that can shape the future of your business. Renew your professional enthusiasm by finding out more about your industry, your customers and even your own company this year.
- Quit Smoking
It’s not easy breaking bad habits, some even more so than others. If you determine that something is negatively affecting your business, you have a responsibility to break the bad habits that are contributing to the negative consequences. Just like the hard work of losing weight, this might mean some difficult conversations with staff or the need to change the way things are done.
- Help Others in their Dreams
American business icon and motivational speaker Zig Ziglar once said, “You can get everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” A business doesn’t exist for itself; it exists to serve the needs of others, from customers to shareholders and even vendors and employees.
The best way to help your business fulfill its mission and grow is to focus on helping your customers and employees achieve their dreams. When this attitude shows up in your business, it shows up everywhere. Conversely, where customers and employees are seen merely as the means to business success, that attitude shows up as well.
- Fall in Love
The Urban Dictionary provides an interesting description of what it’s like to fall in love:
“I can’t stop thinking about her, she’s been on my mind all day. Even though I just saw her 2 minutes ago, I’m already starting to miss her. And dude, I wonder what our baby would look like.”
The best businesses are infused with passionate people – people who can’t wait to start in the morning, who can’t wait for their clients to come back, who spend their time thinking about ways to make the customer (or the employee) happier and who can envision just how great the future could be.
In the New Year, you might need to make sure that you get to spend more time doing what you love most in your business – because that’s where you will be most effective. You might need to hire people who share your passions so that you can grow your business more quickly. You might need to find out what your customers love so you can deliver on it.
- Spend More Time with Family
Perhaps more than most, business owners understand the value of time. Time is money, yes, but where we choose to invest our time also demonstrates what we truly value. It can be easy to become so busy doing the tasks that need to be accomplished that the people of most value are neglected in the process. Be sure that you spend time with those of most value to you and your business in the New Year.
Take time to interact with customers. Spend time with employees in groups and one on one that gives you a chance to understand them better professionally and as people. Listen to what mentors, vendors and other peers can tell you about the marketplace or the insights they have about you and your business. The time that you spend with the people most important to your business could
One last PRO TIP: Whatever goals make the final cut in your Business New Year Resolutions, write down your business goals for next year and share them with someone you trust. A study done by Gail Matthews at Dominican University found that those who wrote down their goals and shared them with a friend were 33% more likely to achieve them than those who didn’t.
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