No matter your business or your background, December is usually a blur.
You’re running your business, putting the finishing touches on your Q1 2019 plan, while trying to be as productive as possible despite your staff and clients’ vacation times.
This chaos usually leads to starting the new year off on a less-than-ideal foot. People tend to come back to work January 2nd exhausted and emotionally worn out. They’re emotionally (or literally) hungover.
But here are a few things you can do in December that will set you up for success for the next 12 months
Celebrate Your Successes in 2018
We so very rarely do this because we connect it to complacency, or even hubris: But look back at your own success and celebrate it. Even if it’s privately to yourself.
It doesn’t matter if this was your finest year ever or your most challenging year ever. You need to look back and count your victories, without dwelling on the mistakes. You’re still here, your business is still here, and you’re in control of your own future; even if it doesn’t always feel that way.
Think about all you’ve done in 2018. Look back. Be proud. Be grateful. Find the time to thank your staff, your family and your friends who helped make it all happen.
If you keep a journal, take a look back at some of the entries over the last year and reflect on the ups and downs of this journey. If you don’t keep a journal, go buy a nice leather bound one tomorrow and add your first entry. You will thank us around this time next year.
Be Thankful For Your Clients. And Say Thank You
Speaking of gratitude, don’t forget to thank the people who have very literally helped you keep the lights on: your clients and customers.
Sending gifts is always an amazing way to say thank you, but there is such thing as gratitude on a budget.
A personal and hand-written card is now more impactful than ever in this digital age. Pepper in as many personal details as you can, like the name of their partner, or a reference to an inside joke you share. You can even record a personal video greeting. Again, keeping things as individual and personalized as possible will make it as memorable as possible.
Or, there is the Holy Grail of reasons to reach out over the holidays: The referral. Take some time, look at your network and try to connect some dots. Who can work with who, and who can help who?
Measure all of Your Metrics and Set Goals for 2019
Food for thought in the New Year: If you’re finding yourself failing to measure up on a metric for the second year in a row, ask yourself if this is really a number that will help you grow your business.
For example, people can get hung up on the number of followers their business has. Maybe you have a smaller following, but the people you do have are actively engaging with your social content. They’re sharing, retweeting and commenting on your posts. I’ll take this over a large-but-disengaged following any day.
Of course, you want to constantly measure and benchmark. You can’t manage what you don’t measure. But always revisit the actual metrics you’re tracking, and make sure they’re relevant and actually contributing to your success.
2019 Could Be The Year To Consider Moving Your Business To Innisfil
Imagine growing your business in a municipality that actually invests in their small business owners. Innisfil is just 45 minutes North of Toronto, right off Highway 400. It’s also just South of Barrie, making it a great spot to do business out of. Right now Innisfil is doing incredible things to help it’s entrepreneurs, like our Women Entrepreneur Digital Marketing Boot-camp. Take a look around this site, and if you’d like to learn more about Innisfil, and what we can do for your business, download our free Entrepreneur’s Toolkit here.
If you want to learn even more about Innisfil and meet Dan Taylor, The Economic Development Catalyst for The Town, he’ll be at Fuckup Nights Toronto from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. He’ll be happy to tell you about our brand new entrepreneurial ecosystem support initiatives, including our new co-working space, incubator and accelerator launching in January. Look for him or text him at 705-796-7002 to chat. If you see him – drop your business card in the stocking on his ugly sweater for your chance to win a $250 gift card to Staples.
He hopes to see you there!