I’ve had a jolly good New Year celebration particularly because the holiday is very dear to me and I planned every detail of a satisfactory experience. I had one thing going for me – I only needed to plan for two days. How hard can it be?
I also did my best to plan something for the year to come, I’ve set goals and did my best to present myself with new, engaging challenges. Alas, I’m not as certain in them as I was in the New Year’s Eve plans.
Case and point – do you have plans for 2018?
Sure you do. Everyone has at least some plans. But are they any good? How “set in stone” are they when anything from a flat tire on “day X” to an alien invasion may happen.
Given all the potential variables, planning your every move for a span of time as long as a year is nearly impossible. That’s why I don’t like life-long detailed plans. I prefer setting goals.
Setting a goal is simple, it doesn’t require too much prep work and is actually an achievable thing. All you need to set clear goals is knowledge of the ground you stand on. For example, you might wish to get more clients booked on your calendar. You know that your usual is 10 per week and you make X from them. You know you have the time to serve 15 people per week, so that should be your goal.
You also know how to achieve it – think of the best times for your business, when the client’s flow was endless? What did you do back then? Think of a pattern and repeat it now.
Obviously, this example is overly simplified, but it is not designed to teach the goal-setting process, but rather to display how it works. You are most welcome to set your own one in a way you see fit.
And is there a better night to do it than New Year’s Eve?
So what are some of the best resolutions a smart business owner can make for 2018?
#1 – I promise to never stop learning, if even for a second!
The internet offers a lot for small business owners. From white papers and ebooks to webinars and conferences on any imaginable aspect of business – it’s all there. Critically acclaimed experts like Chris Brogan, Gary Vaynerchuk, Neil Patel and many others share their secrets online free of charge. It would be dumb not to use the opportunity to learn more, given the availability of knowledge.
However, the knowledge available on the internet is just the tip of an iceberg. The real source of wisdom is you: learn from your mistakes and capitalize on your victories. If something works well, consider making a pattern of it. Adapt, overcome and succeed as that’s what real learning is all about.
#2 – I will invest more in technology
Every business is a tech business nowadays. The time has come to finally accept it for granted and deal with business accordingly.
Everything from a data-driven social media strategy to an AI-based chatbot or intense business process automation are no longer just buzzwords but are a necessity for those, who wish to beat their competition.
Technology is key and I would also emphasize investing in it smartly because of Net Neutrality being at risk. Simply having a website or a Facebook group won’t do the trick in an environment of ever-growing competition and butchered load speed where internet users are forced to only visit a handful of resources.
Equal opportunities on the web will fall into a blissful memory sooner or later, and if I were you, I’d start getting ready as soon as possible…
#3 – I will become better at letting go
Saying goodbye is an important skill in business. Whether you need to let go an employee that’s slowing down the entire team and has a negative impact on culture, or you need to stop using a certain practice that’s doing more harm than good but is already an established element of your company – say “goodbye” and move on.
Are farewells hard? Sure!
Are they heartbreaking? Definitely.
But it needs to be done for the sake of your whole company!
These are my top 3 New Year’s Eve resolutions for smart business owners. What would you suggest adding to the mix?
Oh, and on the bright note – Happy New Year! May the new year bring joy, peace, and prosperity to you and your close ones!