3 New Year's Resolutions Every Business Owner Must Make
Get to the Point
- Close the Books — Take care of closing the books for 2018 right away, and open them for 2019.
- Look at Pricing — The start of the year is a great time to make sure your pricing is in line with where it should be.
- Set Goals — Take the time to understand what the goals are in each department, and make sure they are in line with your goals for the company.
The calendar year has changed, and that means a new start. It also means it’s time for new year’s resolutions, and that is especially true for business owners. We all know new year’s resolutions are not the best way to think about change — you can try something different any time of year — but January is a great time for planning ahead.
Here’s how to start 2019 off the right way.
Close the Books on 2018
From an accounting standpoint, closing the books on 2018 and opening them for 2019 is essential. This could be in your accounting system, or through working with your accountant.
Making sure your pricing is in line with where it should be is one of the strongest ways to start the year the right way.
However you manage the books, make sure to take care of this right away. Once you have the new year ready to go, you won’t be scrambling as the first expenses and invoices of 2019 start flooding your office.
Look at Pricing
The start of the year is a great time to look at pricing. Usually, you have an idea of how your company fared the year prior, and you want to ensure you will continue to grow in the year to come. Many of us make new year’s resolutions with respect to spending or saving in our personal lives, and it’s no different for business owners. Making sure your pricing is in line with where it should be is one of the strongest ways to start the year the right way.
Part of looking at your pricebook is finding where the issues are, and that can take time. An HVAC company in January is going to be very busy, so it’s a difficult time for a close look. However, a plumbing company might not be as busy. Whenever you tackle this job, your best bet is to look at what your labor rates are. Start there, and let it trickle down across the board. Ask yourself, “Are my labor rates helping my business stay profitable?”
Remember, there are many different services out there and many different groups or communities that you can engage. Never hesitate to say, “Hey, I’m a business owner in Florida. What should my labor rates be?” You can build your price from there. There are also some great billable hour calculators available.
There is no better time of year for looking inward than January. Set your personal goals and company goals for 2019. If you can break those down into departmental goals, even better! Perhaps that means a CSR booking closing rates a little better, or a truck doing 250,000 a year rather than 200,000.
Entrust your staff to aim higher, and watch how they respond.
At Pointman, we use the Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) goal-setting system internally, and it pays off. Looking for a guidebook when it comes to OKRs? Check out Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs by John Doerr.
One key question is the best way to handle setting goals: Is it smarter for business owners to handle this solo, together with staff, or to delegate completely?
The best approach is to set goals at the department level. As an owner, you need to take the time to understand what the goals are in each department, and make sure they are in line with your goals for the company. No one likes to set unattainable goals for themselves, so make sure you push your departments to set goals that are lofty, rather than simple ones to feel good about hitting. Entrust your staff to aim higher, and watch how they respond.
Need help with your books, setting goals or reviewing your price book? Pointman PACT can help. Learn more about this combination of Process, Analysis, Community and Technology.