2020 is a year I am sure many people would rather forget. This time last year the UK leaving the EU was the most prevalent topic in the news – it was virtually impossible to switch on the news or read a newspaper article without Brexit being mentioned!
For most of this year, Covid 19 has taken over the world – and is likely to continue to do so for some time. It has had an impact on us all in many different ways – not only the worry of catching the virus itself but also the fear of losing loved ones, losing our jobs and having to adapt to a completely different way of living.
Unfortunately, Covid has also had a huge impact on businesses in many different industries. Some have had to close and will never be in a position to re-open. Others have had to make huge adjustments in order to remain open and ‘Covid safe’ - and may still have to make more adjustments going forwards due to the ever-changing rules and regulations.
What is invaluable for any business at this time of year (and in particular 2020 with all the challenges and changes it has bought with it), is to make your business plans for the next year. Many business owners are guilty of getting too bogged down in the day-to-day running of their business and don’t set aside enough time to look at the future and the bigger picture. However, the run up to the new year is a really good time to take a step back and decide what you want your business to look like in 2021. Take time to reflect back on the year so far, assess what has worked (or hasn’t worked!) and consider what goals you would like to achieve for your business over the next 12 months.
It is often difficult to narrow down all the ideas you might have for your business from among all the potential new opportunities. It is therefore important to be realistic about what you can achieve - set priorities and establish your top 2 to 3 goals for the next year rather than trying to accomplish everything all at once.
Make sure that the goals you set for your business are both achievable and impactful rather than too ambitious or vague. Don’t do what so many of us do with New Years’ Resolutions and set unrealistic goals that get thrown out of the window mid-January amid much anxiety and disappointment!
Research the best way to achieve your top goals and break each goal down into smaller, more manageable tasks – that way you are able enjoy the little successes that lead to your overall target as you go along.
It is also important to give yourself a reasonable timeline for meeting your targets. Take your time to think about and research your goals before implementing them and make sure they are aligned to your overall business strategy. And set aside time every quarter to ensure you are still on track with your goals throughout the year and make any adjustments if necessary.
In this increasingly digital age, one of your goals might be to improve your social media presence. Think about trying a new medium that you are not currently using to highlight a point of interest in your business or even try creating a short video to offer a promotion. By creating regular, memorable and engaging content that reflects your brand and values, you are more likely to attract new business – a key goal for many businesses. It can be difficult for business owners to know where to start with all the social media platforms available to them and it does involve a big time commitment. However, don’t forget it is possible to outsource – anything from the initial setup of an online presence to regular content posting.
Whether your business is large, small, a start-up or long-established, all businesses will aim to achieve a better financial position in the next year. You need to look at your income, expenses, budgets etc in order to create a proper financial plan. Look at where your business currently stands and decide what goals will help you reach the next level financially - can you increase your revenue or decrease your costs by a targeted amount per month? What is the financial impact if you outsource some areas of your business, such as admin or marketing? If you want to make the next year more profitable, productive and successful than this year, you need to evaluate all areas of your business in order to develop a goal that will drive your future growth.
Overall, it is important that business owners continually evaluate their businesses, but the run up to a new year is a really good time to look at where you currently are, where you want to be and set the goals that will help you achieve this.
Westbury Admin Services offer a wide range of services and can work with you to help you to achieve your new year goals – so please contact us to see what we can do for you and your business.