2023 is right around the corner and even though it seems like you have tons of time to think about what next year will look like for your business, now is the time. As soon as November hits the holidays take over personally and professionally and planning for the next year usually gets lost in the shuffle. Let’s get a head start!
Every year, usually in October or November, my team and I have a planning meeting. The goal of the meeting is to assess how this past year went and what we are going to focus on next year.
There is so much that we can learn from what we’ve already done or are doing in our business. I feel that assessing your business is the most important thing you can do to make the following year a success. Yes, looking into the future and thinking long term and short term goals are crucial too, however, how can you finish and enjoy a book if you couldn’t comprehend the chapters in between…
To plan for a successful year ahead in my business, here are the questions I ask myself before we start planning:
- What did we do well this year?
- What didn’t go so well this year?
Sometimes we learn more from things that don’t go well (aka failed launch, a service that you were never able to sell or a freebie that was never downloaded) than all your successes so DO NOT avoid asking yourself this question.
You can also take a look at the way you managed projects, systems and tools that were used, maybe you realized you need help with time management. What can stay and what needs to change in order for your business to run smoothly and efficiently while also maintaining growth.
- What are you enjoying in your business?
- What are you not wanting to do anymore?
You became an online business owner so you could avoid the stress and hassle that a corporate job may hold, or you took up this side hustle to bring in more income. Either way you know that money isn’t everything and your happiness is a priority. What do you enjoy in your business and what could you streamline, delegate, or get rid of altogether? Maybe there is a service you no longer want to offer because you dread all the intricate details.
Along with finding happiness in your business, you also need to evaluate how well your goals aligned with your actions. There may be a product you want to discontinue because it no longer speaks to your target audience.
- What will you focus on for 2023?
- What new ideas do you have?
This is always the fun part, right?
Maybe it’s for a freebie, new service or product. Creating one of these things and putting it out into the world doesn’t guarantee your success but using these items to reach a common goal does. Meeting your goals will be contingent on the steps you take to get there. Once you set yearly goals, what new offering or structure could you incorporate into your business that will bring you closer to that goal? And don’t forget to prioritize because you are not going to be able to incorporate all your amazing ideas right away
- Are there things you need for your business?
This could be a teammate, a course, a new website, or even softwares to streamline your business. Think about things that could help improve your business, this could even be updated SOP’s as we usually update ours once a year.
Once you’ve gone through all these questions, what I like to do first is create a goal for my business so that when my team and I are assessing a new project at the beginning of the new year we can see if it’s inline with that overall goal.
We look at the time consumption of the project, its complexity, was it out of our range of services so much that it didn’t push us towards our goals, etc.
For example, two years ago our main goal was list building. When we were brainstorming about what new projects we should take on so we greenlighted any freebie ideas as that would help with my list building.
Now, it doesn’t have to be black in white. A lot changes in a small business in the course of year, but evaluating the previous year in your business and putting together a great game plan for the future is a great way to make you stay on course with your goals and create the success you’ve always dreamt of.
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