Ask a business owner what keeps them up at night, and many will respond with “There aren’t enough hours in the day,” or “I just can’t seem to get out from under all the work I have to do.” It appears that small business owners still haven’t mastered the fine arts of time management and workforce productivity.
As the end of 2019 approaches and businesses prepare for the holiday season and the start of a New Year, here are two simple steps owners can take to help them sleep better at night (while solving some of their pain points at the same time):
Review and Upgrade Your Technology – Given the importance of tech in your business, and how affordable most of it is today, getting annual upgrades for computers, smartphones, and other devices is a solid investment. I have a client that runs much of her business from a smartphone—which is in constant need of a charge. She’s had the phone for just over one year, and the battery is already shot. Unfortunately, she claims not to have the time to get a new one even though I’ve pointed out several times how much the current phone is slowing down her ability to interact with employees, customers, and vendors. This needs to be a priority in her business.
The same rule applies for the hardware and software that runs your company. If your computers and the core software programs operating your business are outdated, look to make the upgrade before the start of the New Year. You can’t win the Tour de France riding a tricycle, and your business will struggle if it runs on yesterday’s technology.
Get Organized – If your office looks anything like mine in the final months of the year, it probably needs a good makeover! What starts out as a welcoming environment for work in January turns into organized chaos by the summer, and then a place only the brave dare enter by November.
Take time before the start of 2020 to organize your work space. Throw out what you don’t need, take action on the important items, and only put documents in your filing cabinet that are worth saving. Do the same for your computer files…review, delete, and save.
The best approach to reviewing your work files from 2019 is to do it with other people if possible. This exercise allows you to discuss what went right or wrong with certain clients or customers. It also helps you set your approach to dealing with them in 2020 (learning from your mistakes and repeating the winning processes).
I hope you can incorporate these two suggestions into your business this week. They will help you end 2019 on a high note, and get you ready for the start of the New Year.