New Year’s Resolutions to Make This the Best Year Yet!
It’s a new year… YEAH! So what are you going to do different this year to get you closer to your goals? Making some new year’s resolutions will get you on the right track. Commitment to a well thought out plan, and the flexibility to make changes and corrections when needed will greatly contribute to your personal and business success.
2018 New Year’s Resolutions for Small Businesses
Make 2018 the best year yet by committing to these Small Business Owner New Year’s Resolutions. Grow your business and find your zen with these 2018 resolutions, quotes, and recommendations for great resources and low-cost deals for your Small Business or home office.
1. Analyze the last year.
Find what is broken – and fix it or get rid of it. Find out what worked great – and duplicate it or multiply it. Through success and failure, we find out what works. This is true in business and in life and applies to the physical and mental aspects of both.
Did your lax policy of employee cell phone use increase customer satisfaction and profit? No? Then fix it. Does that clearance rack desk printer that keeps breaking save you money or time? No? Then don’t buy cheap equipment that cost you in the long run. Does getting up an hour earlier on Mondays get twice as much work done? Yes? Then do it Monday through Friday. Did the bowling alley next door close and a big box gym move in? Yes? Figure out what you can sell to the new demographic of foot traffic.
Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. – George Bernard Shaw
2. Let go.
There are more things to do than hours in the day for the small business owner. And guess what? You are not superhuman. So your resolution this year is to do all that is humanly possible and then find a way to get the rest done. That means delegating and putting some trust in other people to do what they know how to do (at home and at work).
You can also outsource the things you don’t have time for or just aren’t good at. If an hour of your time as a business owner is worth say $60, and you spend 8 hours a month doing the payroll that’s $480. If you suck at it, why not pay a payroll service who can do it in twenty minutes for $50 a month. You will save time and money.
You can do ANYTHING. But not EVERYTHING. – David Allen
3. Replace the word “perfect” in your vocabulary with the word “spectacular”.
Chasing perfection is eating up time you just don’t have to spare. Don’t spend four hours on the PERFECT flyer or proposal. Instead, spend 30 minutes on a SPECTACULAR flyer or proposal that is pretty darn close to the perfect one you spent half the day on. This year, a new resolution is to realize that perfection is a myth and pledge to do your amazing best. Customers and clients want your spectacular products and services! And your best is spectacular, or you are in the wrong business.
If PLAN A didn’t work. DON’T STRESS OUT. The alphabet has 25 more letters.
4. Calendar Everything.
You know you need to do it, so why are you putting it off? No more! Pull out that unopened 2015 planner, look at the entire month January. There are 31 days. Pick one day and block two hours for “Marketing Plan”. Pick another day and block two hours for “Organizing Computer Files”. Pick another day and block two hours for “Business Plan”. Pick two days a month to schedule two hours for “Accounting/Payroll”. Take your Must Do list and make them appointments on your calendar. Mid-January, schedule time to do February’s calendaring.
You know what you NEED to get done. These business requirements should not be handled in a “fly by the seat of your pants” manner. Lock yourself away. Keep these appointments like you would an appointment with a doctor or a lawyer. You wouldn’t just not show up, it would be rude! And the funny thing is you pay THEM when you show up. But missing these appointments to handle your own business will end up costing you much more.
Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision.
5. Market your business every day.
There are hundreds of ways to market and promote your business, so there isn’t a day that goes by that you should not be doing something. You have (or better be working on right now) your marketing plan. A resolution you can stick to is to make one section of that plan a list of twenty or so impactful marketing activities (less than 10 minutes each) that you can execute every day.
Understand that this is on top of your large scale advertising activities and promotions. Post a tweet, write a thank you letter, or call an old client. Send coupons to your best customers or respond with appreciation to glowing online reviews. Maybe even go to a Q&A forum in your industry to use your expertise to answer someone’s question. Just make sure you are doing something each day. Put it on your calendar so you don’t forget.
The grass is greener where you water it. -Neil Barringham
6. Mean what you say and say what you mean.
Are you reliable? Consistent? Honest? Be realistic about what you can do. Keep your promises to your customers, your staff, and most importantly to yourself. To provide transparency and build trust, make sure that your communications are clear and honest.
Forget “under promise and over deliver.” Keep it simple and authentic. Remember why you are doing what you do, and make surround yourself with people who understand your purpose.
A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination. –Nelson Mandela
7. Continue your education.
I know, I know. You don’t have time to go back to school. I’m not suggesting you get another degree. Take a look at your business skill set to see what is lacking. Find free or low-cost courses, workshops or books that help you develop important skills. Be a better business owner, a better manager, a better marketer, a better salesman. Either online or in person, promise yourself two or three hours a week spent on making you the best you that you can be.
Don’t know where to look? Go old school. Ask at your local library, community centers, and adult learning centers. Also try Open Culture, Udemy, Small Business Administration, and Alison for FREE online learning.
To succeed in business, to reach the top, an individual must know all it is possible to know about that business. – J. Paul Getty
8. Get out more.
Meet your business neighbors and make them your business partners. Join industry groups and go to meetings, and sign up with your local chamber of commerce. Even if you work from home. Networking and making connections with like-minded people provides a resource that supports your success on many different levels. Discuss best practices, learn from others’ horror stories. Or maybe mentor a new business owner who is where you were five years ago. These relationships enrich your life, build your reputation and can lead to referrals.
If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others. – African Proverb
9. Schedule ME time.
Where are you going to find ME time? I don’t know, but it is there. Maybe it’s behind that wall of unfiled expense receipts. Or it’s that 8 hours you freed up by outsourcing your payroll. Where ever it is, pick it up and put it down on your calendar. My one-page weekly planner has a small (very small) “What About Me?” box that I made to write something in each week. Otherwise, it’s not even a thought in my business or home planning. Whether your ME time is two hours at a matinee by yourself, the batting cage, a pedicure, or spin class – make it one of your 10 priorities each week. You can’t enjoy the success of your business from an insane asylum (or jail). So remember to take time out for you before you are forced to take a timeout.
Sometimes you need to take a break from everyone and spend time alone, to experience, appreciate, and love yourself. – Robert Tew
10. Be gracious.
In short show kindness and be generous. Show gratitude, share joy, say please and thank you, and treat people how you would like to be treated. You could skip this one but I have it on good authority that there is some truth to this karma thing.
No act of kindness is ever wasted. – Aesop
It’s out with the old, and in with the new! If 2015 was great, make sure that 2016 is amazing. Make a commitment to yourself by sticking to your Small Business New Year’s Resolutions. I’ve included some links to things I really believe can help you achieve your goals. Some of those links are affiliate links which means I get some pennies on the dollar if you choose to make a purchase, nothing if you click to check it out and don’t buy anything, and you get an opportunity to get in on some cool stuff. Mostly the affiliate links help me buy venti iced white chocolate mochas on the days I need it most, but full disclosure, I wanted you to know there were some here 🙂
Download your FREE 2018 Marketing Calendar in excel for your small business planning.
My Favorite Resources, Tools, and Deals to Get the New Year Started Right
GET RESPONSE EMAIL MARKETING: I love it because Get Response lets you grow your lists, increase conversions, and optimise your audience engagement with beautiful emails and autoresponders, high-converting web forms, laser-sharp segmentation, and unique delivery tools.
Increase ROI with video emails, free online surveys, list segmentation, analytics and more! Open your GetResponse account today!
You can also create and publish high-converting squeeze, video, and promo pages with our drag-and-drop editor, advanced optimization tools and integrations, and more than 100 mobile-ready templates. Get 2018 started off right with this robust and affordable marketing tool!
POWERFUL NEW DESKTOPS AT NEWEGGBUSINESS: It may seriously be way past time to get a new computer. I know you don’t want to hear it but there it is. I’m excited to share news about the awesome pricing for the new ABS N-Series over at NewEggBusiness.com.
Optimized for performance and packaged in a slim case for minimal desk space usage, ABS N-Series desktops provide superb value and the reliable, business-grade performance demanded by professionals. The 4th Generation Intel Core Processor with Integrated Graphics and premium high-speed memory multitask business applications with ease. Combined with the swiftness of a leading SSD, the communications speed of gigabit Ethernet, and peripherals connected using a screaming USB 3.0 interface, this desktop will ensure you and your team can transact business at peak productivity.
GET A 800 NUMBER FROM FREEDOMVOICE: Do you work with customers and clients outside of your local area code and want to let your professional side shine? Get a professional 1-800 number or local number with virtual attendant & mobile app to make calls with your business number as caller ID. Know what is awesome? You can TRY IT FOR 30 DAYS FOR FREE!
CloudNumber is a professional phone number easily managed through your smartphone. Personalize a greeting for your business to answer and send your business calls to you or your team. Get our free mobile app to easily check voicemail or faxes from anywhere and make calls showing your business number as caller ID. Turn on an announcement to tell you when you’re answering a business call so you can greet your customers with something better than, “Hello?”
Virtual Phone Service from $9.95/Month. Free 30 Day Trial!
CAMPAIGNER FREE TRIAL – TURN EMAIL INTO REVENUE: Quickly create custom templates to show off your brand in email marketing campaigns. Start with one of Campaigner’s 900 templates or upload your own code directly into our Full Email Editor for a unique template. Campaigner custom templates allow you to leverage your HTML experience to create the most customized emails with minimal time and effort.
Use conditional (or dynamic) content to personalize each email and target groups of recipients with email campaign content that is specific to their needs. Dynamic personalization lets you send multiple, customized versions of an email campaign in the time it takes to create one email. Our user-friendly WYSIWYG editor and fully customizable email templates make it easy to add conditional content, including images, text, and other rich media.
eRELEASE IS THE SMALL BUSINESS LEADER IN PRESS RELEASE DISTRIBUTION: Reach 347,617 Journalists, Reporters, and Bloggers nation-wide who want your story. Other companies claim to send to a “newswire” but have very limited distribution. eRelease is the only full-exposure, nationwide partner of PR Newswire, the oldest and largest newswire service for press releases. That means they reach all major national print, online, radio, and TV outlets and the Associated Press.
What’s great about eRelease is they don’t just target the big players. Most major media outlets get a significant percentage of their stories from local media outlets, so we’ll send your story to smaller outlets as well.
You can choose up to 3 Industry Targets to ensure that your PR is sent to the audience most interested in your story. Our editors will gladly advise you about targeting. Further, we hand-pick good matches from our exclusive list of subscribing journalists, who’ve asked us to send stories to their personal email inbox.
- How to Write Ad Content That Sells - January 13, 2021
- How to Use the 2021 Marketing Calendar Template Planner – FREE DOWNLOAD - January 5, 2021
- How to Use Your Marketing Calendar Template – FREE TEMPLATE DOWNLOAD - October 1, 2018