Ready for a new year? Well, whether you are or you’re not, it’s right around the corner.
Most of us are excited about the new year ahead. I think that’s the case because it’s a great time to push the reset button and leave behind what didn’t happen or what happened in a bad way and to look forward to having a brighter future.
That’s why we make New Year’s Resolutions…. right?
As someone who every year swore to eat better and get to the gym on a regular basis but quickly fell off the wagon, I can share that a New Year’s Resolution has no power unless you give it real power.
For your business, that means you need to do the following 5 things if you want to set yourself up for more success in 2018:
1. Write down your goals for your business in 2018 and beyond.
Make it more of what you want and less of what you don’t want. Words have power so watch what you say. Written words have even more power. It’s also a problem that so many of us wish for things in our mind but rarely put it in writing or better yet, plan a real path that we can execute to make these wishes and goals a reality.
The act of actually writing your goals is such a powerful thing. Not that typing them into your favorite device like a smart phone, tablet or laptop is a bad thing, but old school writing with pen to paper has been shown to have even more power. That’s because there’s a real connection from the pen and writing to the brain. The “hand-brain connection”, if you will.
2. Set a timeframe for making these goals happen.
A goal without a timeframe is a wish or a daydream and not a real goal. So, why don’t more of us put timeframes to our goals? The reason is we can never be late or face the fact that we’re not making our written goals come to fruition if we never put down a date by when it needs to be done.
This is so important that I don’t back down in my work with clients in our GoToMeeting coaching sessions. They must constantly agree to show me their updated Top Five #1 list with clearly stated goals and updated deadlines. They resist this at first but I don’t give them any slack. It’s too important to their success. Really, I’m not cruel. I just recognize the power of timeframes, deadlines and goals being met so I insist that this is done and it works.
Hey, you can always push a deadline. There are no “Deadline Police” coming to your door and threatening to take away your first-born child or pet. It’s really you being accountable to you. And beyond that you being accountable to your team.
3. Post Your Top Five #1 at work where all will see it:
You may have a number of projects and habits you want to get into place in 2018 and that’s great. But, you need to boil down the big list to your Top Five #1 list, the one you need to be working on right now. These Top Five things must be the items that will have the biggest positive impact on your company. And if that’s the case then you must dedicate a portion of every week to making these come to be. Nothing is more important than that.
But, we’re human. So, work and personal life will pull you off course if you let it. One way to combat this is to post your Top Five list for all to see at work. It’s pretty simple to do. All you need is a whiteboard that’s at least 3 ft. tall by 5 ft. wide. It must go where all the employees at your company will see it on a regular basis. It has the Top Five broken out into 3 columns:
- What you’re doing
- Why you’re doing it
- What’s the status of getting it done
If the board never changes (especially in the last column which is status) they know you weren’t really serious about making positive change happen and you will know it too. That’s okay. You can change this situation any day you wake up and get recommitted to making the Top Five #1 become a reality.
4. Well run meetings at least every week with your staff:
Well run meetings that discuss:
- What went right?
- What went wrong?
- What must we do right now?
These are NOT what I call “donut” meetings. Donut meetings are typically what you’ve attended at your house of worship, your town council or elsewhere. You meet, you discuss the same things but never do anything but eat a donut.
These meetings have:
- A start time that is always honored
- An end time that is always honored
- Only the right people who need to be at the meeting
- These people know what’s going to be discussed because a short tight agenda has been created and distributed to all before they attend
- Notes are being taken so everyone can read the short summary and act accordingly
5. Learn how to do real-world accounting to run your business:
Real-world Accounting is:
- Doing a budget and plugging in the numbers that take your budget from projected to actual
- Arriving at the right selling price for what you do
- Learning how to get to and stay at a Known Financial Position. This allows you to make financial decisions in the moment on financial information you can trust vs. waiting for a quarterly report that arrives too late.
Beyond that there’s real power in learning how to read and understand a Profit & Loss and Income Statement. I’m not advocating you turn into a CPA. I’m advocating you find someone in the industry like Ellen Rohr, my good friend and person I send my clients to, so you too can learn how to do this vital work.
Do these 5 things and get on the path to having a way more successful year in 2018 and beyond.