Being an advocate for entrepreneurs has proven to be a satisfying profession, but I've realized in the last year or so that I'm not always following my own advice -- that businesses can't remain stagnant and must always be looking for new opportunities.
That's why my primary objective is to cross-sell services other than loans. What those services will be remains up in the air.
One reason why the start of each new year is so popular for goal making stems from the fact that it's a natural breaking point and a chance to start fresh. The optimists among us believe better times are ahead. And they may be right, but it will require some hard work from you.
As a leader, CEO, entrepreneur, or all over business hotshot, you need to identify your most critical objective for 2019. Furthermore, you should be laser-focused on making sure you accomplish that objective no matter what it takes, because accomplishing your resolutions is all on you.
Building a company is an evolutionary process -- a process that can go in many different directions. Without control of that process, the odds that it goes the way you want are slim.
Here are some steps to take to ensure that you resolutions become a reality.
1. Start by looking at the company's past.
Consider your entire history, focusing on the positives and negatives. Add weight to more recent events because they're more likely to influence your company's future. Pay extra attention to what succeeded, but keep failures in mind, too.
Synthesize this information gathered from your history to develop a primary objective. How can you accomplish that objective, no matter what it might be? In detail, write out the specific steps you need to take.
It's also important to be realistic. If your gross sales in 2018 were $5 million, a goal of $100 million in 2019 just isn't feasible, although $6 million might be.
2. Focus on a single objective.
This is going to require some tunnel vision, so delegate other tasks and secondary objectives to fellow employees. Your primary objective should be accomplishing those main goals.
Get some insight from some trusted employees when figuring out your objective. They might have insights different than yours that can be a valuable counterbalance.
3. Take the current economic climate into consideration.
Make sur you incorporate the likely uncertainty into your thinking. In my last post, I discussed the possibility of a recession. Whether we technically have a recession is irrelevant, but it seems clear that at least the first half of 2019 will be economically uneven.
Finally, remember to tweak your objective as the year goes on. Nothing is ever static so, at minimum, reassess your priorities every 90 days or so.