Productive New Year Resolutions
The new year is around the corner – the perfect time to make some resolutions for 2018! Not only on a personal level, but definitely for your business as well. Whether this will be the year that you want to start your company or grow it to the next level, with good preparations this month, you’ll be off with a flying start in January! Whether you are planning a career change, start a new company, change bad habits, stop smoking or lose weight. The principles are more or less the same. Make a vertical start to your productive new year’s resolutions with these super helpful, top tips.
Take Your Key Learnings
You won’t do better in the future without learning from the past. Take an afternoon to sit down and look back at 2017. Do you have any regrets? Things you want to do differently next year? And at least as important: what really worked for you this year, what helped you towards this year’s successes? Make sure you’re aware of what worked and didn’t work this year and be conscious about that in 2018.
Set Goals – Long, mid & short term!
Setting clear goals is key when you want to achieve something! For me personally, I don’t get anything done when I don’t set goals. The best way is to work backward. Close your eyes and dream away for a bit. Where do you want your business to be when it’s December 2018? What will you have achieved? It can be in terms of the number of clients, revenues, income, or anything else. Maybe the goal will be that your work can be done 100% remotely? Or take it even further; that your company can exist without your contributions on a daily basis, by automating processes and outsourcing activities.
Once you know what you want your business to look like a year from now, you need to break it down. As our Cowork7x24 CEO Serkan Kurtulus often says to the team:’What needs to hold true to achieve this?’ Write it all down to keep a clear overview. What will you need to outsource? Which costs can be reduced? Which steps do you need to take to get new clients?
Once you have all the necessary steps in front of you, put them into order. What do you need to do first, so you can take the next steps later? When that is clear as well, you simply divide them among the 12 months. Take into account months where you want to work less (summer holidays, anyone?) and when you’re ok with doing more (hello cold, boring winter months!). However, my tips would be to plan more in the beginning and less towards the end, so you’ll have some wiggle room for unexpected circumstances that may delay you.
Now that you’ve broken it down per month, doesn’t your dream look achievable? I think it does! Before each new month, break the monthly steps further down into weekly and even daily steps, and by next summer, you’ll already be halfway towards your goals!
Pro tip: why not give yourself a head-start by taking some action for January this month already?
Breaking down your dreams into short and mid-term goals makes them seem more achievable, but you’ll have plenty of days where it will still feel overwhelming. Often that’s because the little things steal away our time. So the next resolution for 2018 could be: be rigorous with the 80/20 rule!
‘20% of your efforts result in 80% of your outcomes.’ With that in mind, it’s important to understand which activities bring you value and which are just time-wasters. For the time-wasters, understand if they are nonetheless necessary or that they are not that relevant. In the first case, outsource! There is one thing I outsourced from the beginning: my tax returns and all that comes with it. It would take me forever to get done and it wouldn’t make me any money, but obviously, it still needs to get done. I figured an accountant would do it way faster than I could, and in the time I would save by outsourcing, I could either make more money or go do something fun to keep the balance in my life.
Examples of an irrelevant activity are plenty. For example, I used to attend a monthly breakfast club for business owners in my previous city. It was nice, but I always felt a bit like an outsider. The mindsets of most of them were so different from mine, that after a year, I felt like I had barely gained any value out of it: not financially, not in knowledge and not really on a social level either. So I decided not to go anymore.
Another simple example is with social media. I see a lot of business owners trying to be on every platform, while only Facebook and Instagram are valuable for them. Yet they keep using Twitter, breaking their heads each day over what to tweet. You don’t need to be everywhere. If you’ve tried 5 social platforms for 3 months and only 2 get you awareness, engagement, and clients, then just remove the other 3. That will save you lots of time – and headaches!
Boost Your Productivity
A fresh year is, of course, a great start to really stop the procrastination, the distractions, and other reasons you don’t get as much done as you could. Be productive and see how much you can actually achieve! Why not give yourself a flying start? If you book a desk at a coworking space for January, you’ll know that 2018 will start with a great network of ambitious, inspiring people.
Pay It Forward
I strongly believe that paying it forward, doing something nice for someone else in whatever way, shape or form, will come back to us. So why not include that in your resolutions? It doesn’t need to be a grand gesture; the little things count as well! Some ideas:
- Give 5% of all revenues to a charity cause.
- Be a mentor to aspiring people who want to learn from you.
- Raise awareness for a good cause via your company’s social channels.
As you can see, there are possibilities to do something good without it costing any money, so being a bootstrapped startup doesn’t limit you to boost your karma!
Whatever these resolutions mean to you is very personal. When I would put these three into action, it would look very different from when you would do it. That’s the way it should be, because every company is different, just like every business owner, every person. So take some time and see how you can apply these ideas to your dreams & activities and share your goals with us in the Coworking And Beyond Facebook group to inspire others!