As we enter a brand-new year, it’s time to think about making improvements to your business in 2022. While it’s true that 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail, that shouldn’t stop you from being ambitious. You can set your sights high for the next 12 months. Setting (and sticking to) New Year’s resolutions will help you to ditch unhelpful practices and streamline processes.
The Impact Of Resolutions
We all want to grow and make progress toward becoming the best version of ourselves. That’s part of the reason why New Year’s resolutions are such a time-honored tradition. So, it’s no surprise that employees are motivated by a sense of progress over time. In fact, research by the Harvard Business Review found that employees making progress feel more satisfied overall. Of the people surveyed, 76% said their “best days” correlated with feeling like they were making steps forward.
That’s why resolutions are important for your business. It’s not just about making improvements — it’s about motivating your employees behind a common goal. This will increase your employees’ overall satisfaction and open the gateway to collecting honest employee feedback. They’ll let you know what systems they would like changed within the company.
Setting Resolutions For Your Business
When selecting resolutions you want to focus on for your business, keep a few things in mind:
1. Set SMART Goals.
Make sure the goals you set are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely (SMART). In other words, completely plan out your resolutions in advance. That way you can ensure they are both realistic and include a way to measure success or “completion.”
For example, you might want to set the goal of “improving overall profits.” That’s a great goal, but it’s vague. What if you increase profits by $1? Is that what you would consider a success?
Instead, it would be more beneficial to set a SMART goal with the same overall theme. For example, you might say instead that your goal is to increase overall profits by 2% every quarter. You’d achieve it by optimizing the marketing budget, increasing expenditure on lead generation, and improving sales training.
Now your goal is more specific, and you can measure when you have achieved success.
2. Don’t Set Too Many.
Setting 7–8 goals for your company might seem like a good idea. You’re sure to complete at least 1–2 of them, right? Not necessarily. Making too many resolutions can overwhelm your employees and lead them to feel like they’ve been set up for failure. Instead, make your resolutions count by focusing on 1–3 big goals they can work toward together. That way your staff will feel like they have direction and support as they work toward fulfilling the resolutions.
3. Get Feedback From Your Employees.
Resolutions shouldn’t just be about improving your bottom line — although that is important. They should also be about moving toward a company vision that’s exciting for everyone involved. That’s why it’s important to get feedback from your staff on what they want to focus on in the new year.
Maybe your employees want to transition away from an old sales method that doesn’t resonate with younger customers. Maybe your employees want to try out a new CRM software — or they have ideas for opening a new department. Whatever it is, the new year is a great time for employees to make suggestions on how to improve your business.
One great way to foster this open communication is through an anonymous “suggestions box” or survey. Your employees will feel safe while making their honest suggestions. This is vital if you want to know what your employees really want to see change.
Sticking To Resolutions For Your Business
People fail at their resolutions for a variety of reasons. Sometimes they set goals that are too ambitious. Perhaps they simply forget about them over time. But whatever the reason, you can take a few steps to make sure your business stays on the right track.
Get Your Employees Involved.
It’s only natural you’re going to need employee cooperation in order to complete your resolutions. Make sure you get their feedback on the resolutions you set both before and after you set them. If anything prevents your employees from making progress on your company’s resolutions, address it as soon as possible.
For example, your goal is to “increase overall online sales by 5% within the first 6 months of the year by increasing your digital advertising efforts.” So, if something is wrong with your e-commerce portal, website, or advertising copy, you need to know. If your employees say your shop’s website has had a higher bounce rate since the last update, address it. If you’re spending too much on a venture that’s not driving traffic to your shop, address it. Take action to resolve problems quickly and efficiently. That way, your employees can pursue your company’s goals to the best of their abilities.
Re-evaluate Often And Make Adjustments.
In the course of the year, circumstances can change drastically. That’s why it’s important to re-evaluate your business resolutions frequently so you can adjust your strategy. Evaluating as often as once a month — or at the very least, every quarter — helps you stay on track.
If you realize your goal is unattainable, be open to scaling it back to a level that is still ambitious but more realistic. For example, perhaps your sales team doesn’t have the bandwidth to increase overall closings by 25%. But maybe 15% is within reach. If that’s the case, then make that adjustment to your goal. There’s nothing wrong with making adjustments so expectations are in line with reality, even if that means changing your initial resolutions.
Be Willing To Try New Things.
Oftentimes business owners get themselves into a “bubble” where they’re afraid of change because everything has been working just fine. Fair enough. But it’s going to be hard to scale your business with that mindset. If you want goals to be ambitious, then you need to be willing to change in order to see change. If something just isn’t working, then it isn’t working. Maybe you wanted to increase referrals by 20%, but your lead generation software can’t handle that increase. If that’s the case, then you should try new methods or software for lead generation.
So, while setting resolutions can be daunting, sticking to them can be very manageable. Just make sure they are properly framed, evaluated frequently, and flexible. Start out the new year right by setting your business up for success with SMART resolutions!