A New Year’s Resolution for small business owners: make time for a business tune-up!

Judy has been in business for just over two years.  She sleeps, breathes and lives for her business. Some days she jumps out of bed with a zeal for the unexpected. Other days she can barely crawl out of bed and make it through the day.  Running a business can be a very complex process.  Being dedicated to your business is just not enough in these tough economic times.  You need to have realistic goals and an action plan for where you want your business to go.

Entrepreneurs like Judy need to take time to do a business tune-up. This means revisiting objectives and taking action to make sure you are using your time effectively and making the right decisions.. January is a great month to set some time aside for the process.  It is year-end and also the beginning of a new fiscal year.   A tune-up can be done on a weekly, monthly or yearly basis.  What is important is that you dedicate time to the task. Put your business under a microscope and look at it from all angles.  Be realistic!

A few things to consider:

  • When was your last business tune up?
  • Did you make a profit last year?
  • What worked and what didn’t?
  • Are you using your time effectively?
  • How many hours are you working a week?
  • Do you continually run out of time? Is completing a task difficult?
  • What tasks never get done even though you have great intentions? Are you still trying to do everything?
  • Is there anything you can outsource?
  • Are you getting a good return on your investment?
  • What new technology is out there that can make your life easier?
  • Is your marketing plan up-to-date?
  • Have you included social media?
  • Are you continuing to grow as a business owner by taking courses and seminars?
  • Where do you spend your time?
  • Do you know where your business is heading?
  • Are you happy with your results from last year?
  • Did you set realistic goals last year?

After you have spent time re-evaluating your business you may discover or diagnose a few problems.  It will then be time to take action to resolve those issues before they damage your business.  Some businesses even do mini evaluations on projects and procedures.  Your business is important!  If you are like Judy – you are dedicated to your business, mind, body and soul.  But as Benjamin Franklin said, “Time is money.”  Make sure the hours you are dedicating to your business pay off. Start by making a checklist of changes, goals and objectives for the year ahead. If you are a sole proprietor you may need to seek out support and guidance from a trusted source. Consider booking an appointment through our Access to Professionals Program.  We can connect you with a local professional for a free 45 minute consultation.

Just remember to look at the bigger picture.  It is up to you how often you tune-up your business, but try to commit to doing it on a regular basis.  Be consistent!

For more information about any of Halton’s Small Business Centre resources and services, visit us online at www.halton.ca/business, contact us at 1-866-4HALTON (1-866-442-5866), , busdev@halton.ca or visit us in person at 1151 Bronte Road, Oakville.

Do you have your small business resolutions ready?  Share yours.  At the end of the month we’ll submit all entries into a draw for a chance to win a voucher for our upcoming Bridges to Better Business” event (value $50.)

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