Planning For 2013
Now that the end of the year is only a couple of weeks away, what are your plans for next year? This is a great time to reflect on how your year has gone and, based on that, begin to plan out 2013.
This does not need to be a complex strategic planning exercise. You can do an informal review to help you identify the best way to approach next year. As a small business owner you probably have limited time and resources so this review in effect is giving you a chance to reflect on areas where you can make change.
For example, you may consider the following:
• Were the objectives set out at the start of the year achieved? If so, then consider building on those for the next year and if not, try to establish why they weren’t achieved so you can avoid the same circumstances occurring next year.
• Were there any cash flow issues during the year? If so, did they occur due to, for example, seasonal factors, poor planning or increased competition? Try to ascertain why you may have had cash flow issues and put in place a strategy to avoid it recurring in 2013. If you had good cash flow for the year then continue to build on the momentum as you grow the business.
• Are there any areas where you can improve your skills that will benefit the business? Don’t overlook your own professional development and consider undertaking a training course, attending a conference or short seminar.
• Review the work life balance and identify whether you need to make changes. Consider taking a holiday; even a short break can make a huge difference.
• Are there parts of your business that you can outsource that may free up some time, for example, bookkeeping, administration or social media strategy?
• Do you have someone that you can discuss your business with such as a business mentor or coach? Often just getting another opinion or to get some quick advice can make a huge difference.
Running a small business can be very challenging as well as rewarding. The intention with these points is not only to reflect on 2012 but also to assist in ways to plan for 2013 so that you can continue to build on the success of your efforts.