Wow, it is December already. If you are like me you wonder how and when the year slipped by. This is a time to reflect on the many challenges and triumphs, we have had both personally and professionally.
Regardless of your employment, if you’re a small business owner for the first time or a seasoned veteran there are few things that we always need to stay on top of to make the transition to closing out the year and starting a new fiscal year more seamless. These are:
1. Keep your finances up to date.
Be sure to schedule time on your calendar weekly to manage your accounting. Waiting until the end of the month or even end of the quarter can be detrimental. First, it makes the task much larger and more laborious than it needs to be and second by keeping your finances up to date weekly it makes it easier for you to see the trends and make adjustments as needed.
2. Implement a system for accomplishing tasks
We are all aware that in business you need to plan on and expect many interruptions. If you have created a system to work through your to-do list, then do your best to adhere to it. Business will only get busier, making it challenging to meet your deadlines. Ultimately you want to keep your vendors and customers happy.
Your system should include time set aside for checking email. We all know that checking and responding to email can be an all-day consuming task. Schedule time in your calendar once a day when you will check your emails. Stick to the schedule, this includes checking your business social media and responding to comments.
3. Get ahead of taxes
Start preparing your taxes now. This will save you the stress and headaches that come during tax season in April. Most businesses experience a quiet period between Christmas and New Year’s, utilize this time to catch up on some things and get ahead of others like your taxes.
4. Push yourself to keep learning and improving
There is always something new to learn. A new and better way for branding or marketing tips, research, and development, finding new ways to improve your ROI. Mentors and peers are a great resource as well. The most successful business people are the ones who always looking for ways to improve. Make it fun, exciting and challenging to learn.
5. Beware of competing on a price.
There will always be someone willing to do things cheaper so be careful about competing on a price. Compete on your service level or something else that makes your business unique. Customers like a good price but they value your service and unique offering, these are the customers will be loyal to you.
The more organized you stay throughout the year will make your end of the year process that much easier.