As the calendar turns to February, many of us have already let slide our personal resolutions for the New Year. However, even if you’ve already forgotten what the inside of your gym looks like, there are still some achievable resolutions that you can keep.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) published a list of seven resolutions that – if kept – will have a positive impact on your business’s growth and profitability in 2015:
1. Update Your Business Plan. Your small business plan should be considered a “living document” that is updated regularly to reflect recent experiences and lessons learned. The New Year is a great time to dust off your plan and evaluate how your business is adapting to changing times.
2. Take Stock of Your Finances. Small business owners need to regularly take stock of the company’s balance sheets – the heartbeat for businesses of all sizes! This review can include an internal checkup or, when necessary, require the expertise of a qualified advisor.
3. Out with the Old . . . Take an honest look at what is working for your business and – just as importantly, what efforts (marketing, staffing, etc.) are not paying off. Small businesses in particular should also take stock of their position in the marketplace. Are you missing opportunities to expand your footprint through teaming opportunities?
4. Search Out Mentors. Small business owners at all stages can use an honest, helpful mentor. This path can include participating in an SBA sponsored small business development program. Are you taking full advantage of the opportunities afforded to disadvantaged, veteran-owned, and women-owned small businesses?
5. Get More Clicks. The SBA cites a 2013 study by Forrester Research Inc. showing that by 2017, nearly 60 % of all U.S. retail sales will involve the internet. Almost any small business can benefit from updating and enhancing its web presence. Are you effectively reaching your potential customers?
6. Understand the ACA. Small businesses with 100 (or even 50) or more employees absolutely must get their arms around the Affordable Care Act. However, even smaller firms can opt to provide coverage for their employees. Understanding the regulations can help your business avoid potential pitfalls.
7. Get Creative! There is no better time than now for your business to take it to the next level. Finding ways to stand out from the crowd can make all the difference.