The Business of Reflection and Resolution: Preparing for the New Year

Dec. 30, 2021   |   Updated 9:39 AM ET

December presents an excellent opportunity to reflect on the year that was and plan for the new one upon us – not only in terms of one’s personal life, but in business as well. Successful business owners hustle around the clock, often working with customers, handling the books, managing human resources, planning inventory and more.
 
 
Review & Reflect on This Year’s Results
 
As the year closes, these busy business owners should take the time to reflect on their business’s performance. Did the business meet its profit projections? If not, why not? What changes can and should be made in terms of staffing, inventory, accounting or customer service? It’s also a great idea to share the top three highs and the three major lows for the year. This way, they can acknowledge and praise the successes of the team while also identifying the reality of any failures that can arise over the course of a year.
 
 
Review Your Finances
 
Accurate financial statements paint a picture of how a business has managed over time. While past performance doesn’t always predict the future, it is helpful to review the past to analyze decisions that were made.  For instance, if a business wants to determine which business lines were most profitable over the past few years, they need to have precise financials to evaluate what is working and what is not.
 
 
Set Realistic Goals
 
As for the year ahead, it’s important for business owners to set goals. Where do they see the business next year, in 2025 or beyond? What do they need to do to get there? Is this the year they will focus on customer service, accounting controls, beefing up staff or expanding to a new facility – or all of the above? Business owners should plan out their expenses for 2022 where possible and consider whether they plan to invest in new equipment, technology, staff, marketing or something else. When setting these goals, it is important to make sure they are measurable and attainable.
 
 
Create New Habits
 
Whether the business had a good or bad year, change may be helpful. Business owners should review their accounting software, inventory tools, vendor lists and more to make sure these choices not only continue to make sense in terms of budget, but also continue to be the best option available for the business. New technology hits the market every day that can greatly ease burdens on business owners and help them run their business smoothly.
 
 
Get Organized
 
If a business is not properly organized, tasks can pile up, paperwork gets lost, and valuable time is spent on finding information that should be readily available. However, good organizational skills can make or break a business owner, ultimately saving time and reducing stress. Getting organized can nurture productivity, increase revenue, and cut down on risks. Planning is vital to a healthy business so, organizing a time each week to review and adjust can help in avoiding mistakes and staying on track.

 

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