01/13/15

How to Make 2015 the Best Year Your Business Has Ever Seen

We’re now two weeks into 2015, which means about 26% of people have already failed in their New Years resolutions. Kind of a sad statistic isn’t it? When that clock strikes midnight and the calendars turn over to another year, people have their hearts set on losing weight, quitting smoking, and saving more money. Unfortunately, people don’t usually have a great plan in place to keep their resolutions, so they fail.

That’s why, as a small business owner, you have to have a great plan in place to keep your New Years resolutions, and make 2015 the best year your business has ever seen. I’m going to walk you through a quick four-step exercise to help you make 2015 an amazing year.

Defining Success

In the classic book, Alice in Wonderland, the Cheshire Cat asks Alice “Where are you going?” to which she replies “Which way should I go?”. The cat tells her “That depends on where you are going.” Alice replies, “I don’t know.” So the cat says “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”

If you don’t know what success looks like, how will you know when you get there? Let’s figure out what success looks like to your business.

First, take a few minutes and write down the answers to these three questions:

  1. What does success look like for your business?
  2. What projects need to be done for you to declare 2015 a successful year for your business?
  3. How are you going to measure that success?

These answers are going to give you some clear goals, write those down. Just as important, these questions will give you a way to measure your success.

Plotting your course

A goal is great because it gives you something to aim for, but a goal without a plan is just a dream and not worth anything. Let’s create a plan for reaching those goals.

For each of your goals, visualize it, then write down every stepping stone. Write down in order everything that has to happen for that goal to be realized.

Now here’s a great trick to beating procrastination.

How easy do those stepping stones look? Do they seem easy or kind of intimidating? When you get to a point where you’re procrastinating the next step in a process, break it down into easier steps. Keep breaking it down until it’s an easy plan that you can follow. Write down your very next step. Then get going. The momentum from those easy steps will help you conquer the harder ones.

Surrounding yourself with the right people

Susan Ershler, a business book author I recently had the chance to interview, gave some great advice on how to achieve success: “The best advice I could give a small business owner is to build the right team. When you’re climbing mountains, you need to have the right sherpas. When you’re building a business, network. You can’t be an expert in everything, so build a network of experts around you. It will shave years off of your learning curve. Surround yourself with people that can get you to where you want to go.”

Write down what kind of people you need to surround yourself with.

Start surrounding yourself with the right people. Decide if you need to hire a consultant, or hire a full time employee. Start looking through your contacts and LinkedIn to find the right fit.

Find The Right Capital

Now that you know where you’re going, and how to get there, you’re probably going to need some capital to make it happen. Whether the funds are for marketing or payroll, the best time to start looking for capital is now.

When you look for capital before you need it, you’re going to get some pretty great benefits.

First, you’re going to have more time to understand all of your options. There’s a lot of different loan options out there, and taking the time to understand which would be the best for your business is going to set you up for success.

Second, you might need to improve your credit. As you’re researching your different loan options, you’re going to quickly find that the better your credit score is, the more options you’re going to have. Having the time to set your business up for the right loan product is going to save you money in the long run.

If you want to see your loan options for free, you can sign up with Lendio.

Alright, now that you’ve got your goals and your plan, here’s the final step. Put your plan in place. Start running through those steps, and you’ll be amazed by the results you see.

What kind of New Years resolutions do you have for your business?

 

It takes a little cash to change the world.

So what are you waiting for?

About the author

Erik Larson
Erik Larson frequently writes for Lendio about SEO, Digital Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Business Loans, and whatever else strikes his fancy. He can be found on Google+ and Twitter.

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