As we approach the end of 2016, some businesses (high street retailers for example) are at their busiest time, but for most business owners things are starting to get quiet. As a result, its tempting to start to sit back and feel like there is little they can do for their business before the end of the year.
It is probably too late to start a new project. New clients are unlikely to buy this side of the holidays. Oh and now is a terrible time to kick off recruitment of a new hire.
So, here are 3 things you should do this December to help create powerful momentum to make 2017 your best year yet!
1. Arrange meetings with 5 or more existing clients that you haven’t had a catch-up with in the last 6 months
Entrepreneurs tend to be pretty poor at nurturing existing clients, as gaining new clients is how they got their business off the ground. However, getting repeat custom is where the money is really made.
It is easy to lose touch with previous clients, either by focusing on the day-to-day of serving them, or simply that they use your product / service and then go quiet.
Now is the perfect time to send a quick email to suggest a catch-up in the new year. They’ll be glad to hear from you, they won’t have much in their diary for January / February yet, and you’ll have lots to catch-up on when you meet up.
So, right now:
- Write a list of 5 or more clients you’ve not spoken to for a while
- Send an email to each of them suggesting you arrange a catch-up for the new year
- At the meeting, ask questions to find out how they are, what their priorities and challenges are (and if appropriate, explore how you might help them)
2. Develop your plan for achieving your goals next year
January is going to hit you hard. By the time you’ve woken up from your Turkey coma and managed to wean yourself down to drinking just 6 nights a week, it’ll be February.
Don’t let next year flash by – get clear on your top priorities for 2017 and how you’ll achieve these.
Right now, put 4-6 hours aside in your calendar at some point in the next couple of weeks (with your team if you have one) to:
- Define your ‘BHAG’ (big hairy audacious goal) for 2017
- Add 3-5 components to the BHAG to bring it to life (what does achieving it actually look like?)
- Identify the major results or milestones that need to be achieved along the way to your BHAG
- Break down the first few major results / milestones into ‘SMART’ goals with specific, measurable outcomes with deadlines
- For the first 2-3 SMART goals, identify the specific activities / tasks that need to take place to achieve them
- Schedule time in your calendar (and the diaries of your team) to complete those tasks / activities
3. Nurture your team
This is an awful time to kick off recruitment (good people rarely leave their jobs in December, instead people prefer to wait until January) but now is a great time to make sure your best people don’t leave in the new year!
So, go grab a
coffee mulled wine, paper and pen, and consider:
- How could you show your appreciation to your team?
- How could you help your key team members to get excited about the possibilities for them in 2017?
- How could you better serve your team’s needs, or address their challenges?
Good luck, and please let me know how you get on in the Parentpreneur Accelerator Facebook Community!