Now that the holiday season has ended, it is time to set course for a successful new year for your business. While personal new years resolutions are hard to keep, these business new years resolutions can help expand your business and make this your best year ever.
5 Business New Years Resolutions
1. Start the year with gratitude
Consider the people who have helped your business in the past year, namely your clients, mentors and referral sources. Reach out to them to thank them and reinforce your relationship for the new year.
- Clients – Thank clients for their business and tell them your goals and plans for the new year. Ask them for referrals. Prompt them to contact you if there is anything you can do for them. Read our article, Do You Show Your Client Appreciation?
- Mentor(s) – Thank your mentor(s) for their past wisdom and assistance with the success of your business. A quick email or phone call can easily convey your gratitude. It may be a good time to also outline your ideas for the new year to get their feedback.
- Referral Sources – Send a short note to your referral sources thanking them for their past support and also mention what types of clients you are looking for in the new year. Perhaps you are expanding your business or practice in a new area? Tell them how you can further serve their referrals. For tips, read our post, How to Thank Referral Sources.
2. Reach out of your comfort zone
We love the quote, “No great things came from comfort zones.” Resolve to stretch yourself into areas that you are unfamiliar or uncomfortable. Resolve to expand your network, do public speaking, or ask someone to be a mentor.
- Expand Your Network – Resolve to make contact with more people either within your industry or in related industries. For example, if you are an estate planning attorney, make connections with realtors. Why? Because realtors are helping clients who are selling their homes due to death (a potential for probate work) or divorce (an opportunity to draft new estate planning documents) or buying homes for investment (clients may need a trust). Hate networking? Read the article by ShiftWorkPlace, Networking tips and tricks for wallflowers: What to do before, during, and after an event.
- Public Speaking – While few people love public speaking, it is a great way to spread visibility of your business. Offer to speak to groups that could become potential clients for you. Give tips that could help them rather than giving a sales pitch that could help them. For example, a worker’s compensation attorney could give a talk to business owners about how to protect their business from lawsuits. A tax lawyer could give business owners tips to plan for their taxes or update them on how tax law changes might affect them. The Harvard Division of Continuing Education Professional Development presents helpful tips in the article by Marjorie Lee North, 10 Tips for Improving Your Public Speaking Skills.
- Find a Mentor – Mentors can be an invaluable resource for your business and can put you in touch with others that can help your business. Read Lisa Quast’s Forbes article, Finding a Mentor is Easier Than You Think.
3. Learn something new
When you learn some new skill, software, or marketing method, you open up possibilities for your business. YouTube videos are a great resource to quickly master new techniques. You can take courses in social media from online educational websites such as Udemy. Inspire yourself with success stories found on TED talks or podcasts relating to your industry.
4. Get a jump start on your taxes
If you get organized now, you will thank yourself in the months to come. Put all statements, forms and reports in one place until you have time to work on them. Review your prior tax statement to prompt you on what forms and statements you need.
Here is a helpful checklist to get you started from H&R Block, Small Business Tax Prep Checklist.
5. Enjoy the journey
Having your own business gives you freedom. That doesn’t mean you don’t have to work hard. But working hard isn’t so bad if you enjoy what you do. You should enjoy your business and if your are not, you should stop yourself and ask why.
Do you have impossible clients? Resolve to get new ones or learn to manage their expectations.
Are there not enough hours in the day to get things done? Resolve to delegate or outsource routine tasks of which you don’t need to spend your talent and energy.
Do you have an employee or vendor that is not working our for you? Resolve to get a replacement that supports and helps your business.
Examine what is causing you stress or blocking the success of your business and deal with it.
Wishing you a happy, healthy and prosperous new year for you and your business. Want to share your business new years resolution? Please share in the comments below.
Want more tips and advice for your awesome law practice? Check out Law Office on a Laptop, Second Edition: How to Set Up Your Own Successful Law Mobile Law Practice.