Have You Made Your 2018 Business Resolutions Yet?

January 05, 2018

The new year is here, and with that comes New Year’s resolutions – eating healthier, going to the gym, spending time with loved ones, or traveling. While these are all great personal goals, a new year also provides a timely opportunity to focus on resolutions for your business. We talked to our customers about their New Year’s business resolutions and found six overarching themes for 2018. See if any of these work for you!

I Resolve To…Hire and Keep the Best Employees.

Great people are the primary strength of your company. Talent is what makes a business develop, thrive, and ultimately succeed. One key to finding great talent is knowing where to look. Use recruiting apps, local universities, or recruitment agencies to find the best talent in your area.

Once you’ve found and hired the right people, it is important to put them in a position to be successful, which will keep them at your business longer. Give your employees easy access to the information they need to do their jobs when and wherever they need it. By doing this, you’ll create the conditions for them to unleash their full creative potential and collaborate freely on new ideas, market plans, products and services.

To learn more, see the following articles: Find the Right Talent-Wherever You Are, Five Recruiting Tips for Small Business Owners, The Importance of Employee Experience to a Digitization Experience

I Resolve To…Protect My Business from Security Threats.

Today everyone is a target for cyber criminals – whether a solo entrepreneur, employee, small business, or Fortune 500 enterprise. There are a range of cybersecurity threats that your business needs to protect against, from pharming and phishing to DDoS attacks and ransomware, one of the fastest growing forms of attack.

It is important to take the necessary steps and precautions to educate your employees and develop workplace policies. Systems that workers use should be hardened and protected, to avoid security breaches and catastrophes.

While cybersecurity threats are growing, it is also critical for businesses to protect against physical security threats like break-ins and theft. To do this requires the right video monitoring systems in place with great picture quality in order to fully ensure safety and security.

To learn more, see the following articles: Cybersecurity Threats You Need to Know, How to Keep Your Employees from Being Your Biggest Security Risk, Eight Steps to Protect Your Small Business from Ransomware, Video Monitoring: It’s All About the Picture

I Resolve To…Get More from Our Marketing Efforts.

Trade shows and conferences are great ways to develop new opportunities, but just going through the motions won’t get you very far. Think about getting involved this year: speak on a panel, volunteer on a committee or sponsor an event.   

And step up your efforts on social media. Spend time on whatever social media your customers favor, whether it’s LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest. Ask questions. Do quick, informal surveys. Get a sense of your customers’ preoccupations, concerns, unfulfilled needs.  This will help you know what sort of content would help or engage them.

Once you have the appropriate content, it’s time use social networks as a tool to help sell. Sell your company, your products, your business differentiators.

To learn more, see the following articles: Stand Out at Trade Shows and Conferences, Use Social Media to Sell: Creating, Engaging and Nurturing Your LinkedIn Page, How to Create Content – 3 Rules for Small Businesses

I Resolve To…Embrace the Latest Technologies.

Technology drives profitability for businesses of all sizes. For small businesses, it has the potential to facilitate better decision making, streamline internal processes and save money. Keeping up with technological developments—like the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud applications and WiFi—will be a resolution that pays off.

The right technology will help your business be competitive, even against bigger companies.  Automating core tasks like accounting and financial management, for example, can free you up to focus on income-generating activities. And leveraging cloud applications like CRM gives you the access to the very same tools large enterprise companies use. 

To truly harness the power of technology, be sure you have the bandwidth you need.  Collaboration, video conferencing and application performance are all affected by your bandwidth. 

To learn more see the following articles: Using Technology to Drive Business Process Improvement, Harnessing the Power of the IoT, How Technology Supports Cash Flow in Any Business (Especially Yours), What Does Gig-speed Mean To Your Business?

I Resolve To…Better Understand Our Financing Options.

Forecasting your incoming revenue is the foundation for a useful business plan for the new year. With a solid forecast, you can make plans for growth and reinvestment in your business. And for a growing business, there is nothing more important than managing expenses and determining where to spend valuable resources.

The odds are there’s never going to be enough capital available to do everything you’d like, so prioritizing business expenses can be challenging—particularly when there is a never-ending list of expenditures and a finite amount of capital. It is important to understand the best ways to get financing. Today, more and more businesses are turning to non-traditional lenders, and for good reason. Non-traditional lenders are often easier and less expensive to work with, and they offer a wider variety of loan types with a fraction of the approval time.

To learn more, see the following articles: For Better Business Performance, Learn How to Predict the Future, How to View Business Expenses: A Crash Course in Prioritization, A New Way to Get Small Business Financing

I Resolve To…Plan Beyond 2018.

It is not enough to simply think about this year; all businesses need to plan for future growth. The most successful businesses are those that start with a detailed growth plan and revisit it often. They also troubleshoot potential roadblocks before they become problems.

It is also never too early to start organizing a succession plan for when you are ready to retire.  The first step to take is choosing who you want to be your successor, then develop a formal training plan for that person, establish a timetable, prepare for your retirement, and finally transition the business to the successor.

To learn more see the following articles: Four Factors Holding Your Business Back from Growth, How These Small Business Owners Are Preparing for Retirement

Make your own business resolutions now.  They could provide a great foundation for your year ahead and keep you focused on what’s important for your business.

A new year provides a timely opportunity to focus on resolutions for your business.

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