7 new year’s business resolutions for small business owners
If 2020 and 2021 have taught us anything, it’s that preparation is key to running a small business, as are flexibility and determination to shift the course in unique situations. We’ve put together seven resolutions for small business owners to keep in mind as they navigate the new year.
1. Revisit your business plan
A good business plan can guide you through numerous decisions as a business owner. It allows you to map out your knowledge on your business model, industry, and financials, including potential lenders when you eventually decide to seek capital. But a business plan is only relevant for so long. So take some time to revisit your business plan and take stock of what you’ve learned thus far, new challenges and/or opportunities within your business and industry, and adapt your business plan to the new trends so your business will continue to grow in the new year.
2. Update your marketing plan
Just as it’s important to revisit your business plan, this is the perfect time to re-evaluate your marketing practices and how you will reach your consumers in 2022. The pandemic has brought a radical increase in online shopping, which has been a boon for small businesses that have established their digital footprint. If you’re still wondering how you can grow your small business’ online reach, check out our blog to get you started.
3. Grow your network
Hopefully as you start the new year, you will have some down time from the holiday season. During the last years of uncertainty, collaboration and partnerships have become essential for small businesses to help them navigate COVID-related challenges. Make an effort to make new connections with other business owners, vendors and acquaintances in your community and make sure to focus on building authentic relationships. When you make networking a priority for your small business, you’ll eventually see the results in increased partnerships and prospective clientele.
4. Try new tools
Work smarter, not harder! New tools and resources become available every day, so take some time to do some research and find what tools and resources may help you automate tasks and maximize your productivity. Here’s a good starter compilation of tools based on your business needs.
5. Get ready for tax season
Small business owners, including sole proprietors, partners and S corporation shareholders, are required to make estimated tax payments to the Internal Revenue Service if they expect to owe tax of $1,000 or more when their return is filed. Prepare your documents and receipts ahead of time so you don’t have to scramble as you near the quarterly due date.
If you can afford it, seek advice from a professional accountant who may help file your taxes, but also advise you on how to secure additional tax exemptions, business financing, and much more.
6. Make an assessment of what’s working and what’s not
Get in touch with your customers and employees at every level to gauge what’s working in your small business and what might need to be improved. This will allow you to create a stronger relationship both with your customers and employees, save time and money on procedures that no longer make sense for your small business and find creative ways to solve or approach new challenges.
7. Take some time to rest
Small business owners are constantly pulled into many different directions and many wear different hats within their own firm. This can easily lead to burnout, which is not good for your or your small business. Make sure to set aside some time to take a break throughout the year, and be mindful of how you spend your “break” time to truly ensure that you are taking some time for yourself.