A new year is just around the corner. As 2023 comes to an end, there are plenty of things you can do for your small business in order to start 2024 on the right foot. Here are some tips to guide your preparation:
Reflect on your performance in the past year
The end of the year is a great time to reflect on how your business has been doing. Take some time to look back on the previous year and identify the successes you’ve had and the people who have contributed to these achievements. An end-of-the-year office party can be a great time to show your appreciation for your team and celebrate your business’s accomplishments and employees’ individual successes.
However, as great as it is to highlight successes, it’s also important to identify your business’s failures over the past year. These low points can be a good learning experience, helping to point out ways in which your business can improve. Use your past mistakes to set better goals for the new year that will help to correct the problems within your business.
Establish your goals
What do you want to accomplish in 2024? Having specific business goals in mind can help you stay on track throughout the next year. Look at where your business is currently and the kind of progress you’ve already made, and use that information to set one overarching goal for 2024. This goal could be related to any aspect of your business – revenue, engagement, growth efficiency, etc. Once you’ve established your main goal for the year, you can define smaller goals for the next 12 months. Having these smaller, more feasible action items can make sure you’re staying on track throughout the year.
Review your finances
Whether you’re working with an accountant or crunching numbers on your own, it’s important that you’re reporting on your finances at the end of the year. There are three key reports that you need to be reviewing: your balance sheet, your income statement, and your cash flow statement. For help understanding these reports, check out our financial statements guide.
By putting these statements together, you’ll have a more clear understanding of your business finances overall. From there, you can reflect on what financial decisions positively or negatively impacted your business. These reflections can help guide you in your budgeting or other financial planning decisions for 2024.
Prepare for growth
If you are projecting your business growing in the new year, it’s vital that you’re getting prepared. Will an influx in business require more employees? If so, how soon will these employees need to be hired? Will you require updated equipment? How long will it take to get these new updates? Asking yourself these kinds of questions now and planning accordingly will help you to have a more seamless growth journey in the new year.
Do some housekeeping
The end of the year is a great time to do some of the more tedious work that you’ve been putting off. Maybe your desktop needs to be cleaned up, or you have an inbox crammed full of unanswered emails. These kinds of organizational tasks are often a lower priority throughout the year. Taking the time to get organized now can set you up with a clean slate for the new year.
Take some time for yourself
You can better take care of your business the better you take care of yourself. It’s recommended that working people take a vacation approximately once every three months. Having a chance to unplug, relax, and reset can be vital to your overall happiness and health. However, a study from OnDeck found that 43% of small business owners have no plan for taking vacation time off.
Take a step back from your work, and give yourself the time you need to unwind and reset. As you plan out the next year, make sure to schedule some time off so that you can plan your working obligations around your vacation time, rather than just trying to squeeze in a break at the last minute.
The Bottom Line
The best way to have success in the new year is by having the right support behind you. Here at Grasshopper, we understand what it takes to run a small business. That’s why we’re always striving to improve our banking experience with a suite of innovative products and a passionate team of experts. With Innovator Business Checking, you can go into the new year with the comfort of knowing that your finances are in good hands.
By Michaela Lenahan in Small Business