Did you make a new years resolution that involves getting into shape? This is undoubtedly the most common life goal that people set every year. Lose Weight Now. But, as a business owner, you may be thinking about getting your business in better shape next year.
Right? Interestingly enough, to get your business in shape it requires the same discipline as a strict exercise regimen for your body. I’ve created a list of helpful suggestions to help you shape up your business for the New Year. By following these suggestions, we can get you well on your way to creating more enjoyment in your life and more fulfillment in your work.
1) Commit to delegating more and delegating more effectively. Tell yourself that you are going to “Let Go” a little more this year. When you can change the way you see your business, you change the way you run your business. Choose to see your work as your passion that brings more pleasure to your life. A vital business is not the end game, a vital life is the end game. A business should give you greater fulfillment, not less.
2) Create a business and life plan involving goals and direction that you will stick to for the year. Take time out to focus on your business and personal goals for the year. Direction and clarity can help alleviate a lot of the pain.
3) Spend more time in strategic and business planning and less in day to day operations. As part of your business plan this year, remember part of the goal is to make your business “systems” dependent and not “owner” dependent. Don’t buy into the belief that you are so irreplaceable that a solid system can’t take care of things while you are away.
4) Hire a business coach or life coach to hold you accountable for implementing your business plan and personal goals throughout the year. It’s amazing how many people have a plan that they develop and then don’t follow. This is because no one is there to hold them accountable!
5) Become better at asking for referrals so you don't have to spend so much time and money marketing to strangers. Asking for referrals is the most cost‐effective way to grow your business and nurture valued relationships. Most small business owners have no marketing system in place for their business so they don’t continuously ask for referrals. Your clients want to help you so ask for help. You simply have to show them how and why to refer you and offer some incentive for doing so: find a way to help them where they really need it.
6) Replace the word marketing in regard to your business with the word “educating.” You educate clients and prospects about what you do. It’s through education that you end up marketing yourself. The word educate also carries more credibility. As an “educator”, first they must get to know you, like you and trust you. Then, they will refer you. That’s the ultimate marketer’s goal!
7) Detoxify your business by getting rid of toxic employees that have become liabilities to your organization. Emotionally disengaged employees with bad attitudes are like “cancer” in your company. You need to get rid of them before they destroy the culture of the entire organization.
8) Listen deeply to upset employees or clients to find out where your business could possibly use improvement. Paying close attention to where the pain is coming from inside and outside your organization will go a long way to building a positive workplace and vital company.
9) Plan sufficient breaks from your business to recharge your passion and energy. Working too many hours leads to “burnout” and poor productivity. A little contrast in your life is great for coming back and gaining some perspective on your business.
10) Remember you are not your business. Do not let your entire self‐esteem get tied to the business – or have it fluctuate with your company’s success – you will never be able to downshift, get away, or sell.
Real wealth is physical/mental health, emotional connections, loving relationships, spiritual well‐being, and to know that you matter to others. The greatest thing about the marking of a new year is that we give ourselves the chance to reinvent ourselves. We can wipe our imaginary slates clean and start again new hoping to be more effective and gain greater clarity about our lives and companies.
Hope, however, is an illusory belief in action. Write your plan and be more accountable to it. As a fellow business owner, I understand the desire to earn more, work less and enjoy life more. I also understand that for a business in to get in shape, the owner’s attitude has to shape up first. To do this, we have to take ongoing and consistent mental inventory for the New Year. Observe when negative self‐talk makes its way into your business mindset. Rid yourself of the old beliefs that are no longer serving the best interest of you or your company. Seek support and be patient, but diligent in your aspirations.