1. Review and Update Your Business & Marketing Plans
The purpose of your business plan is to keep you in line with company goals and objectives. If those have changed, you need to tweak that plan. And your marketing plan likely needs some updating as well, since there are new marketing tools cropping up all the time.
Taking Action: Set aside a few hours to pull out your plans and blow the dust off of them. Read through them and don’t be afraid to take a red pen to areas that you want to change. Update the plans to reflect where you want to take your business in 2015, and create action items to help you achieve your goals.
2. Examine Your Staffing Needs, Policies, and Procedures
Do you need to hire more staff next year? Pull back on the number you’ve got? Now’s the time to consider that. Also look at your hiring and training procedures. Where could you improve them? Perhaps creating or updating your employee handbook would make onboarding new staff faster and easier.
Talk to recent hires about your training processes, and get feedback from them on how they could be better. Be open to suggestions, as they’ll only serve to make your company more streamlined.
Taking Action: Work with your executive team or managers to assess staffing needs and procedures. Work together to create a comprehensive plan that will take the stress out of hiring and training next year.
3. Get Your Legal Paperwork in Place
If you’re a corporation, you may need to submit your Statement of Information or Annual Report before the end of the year to keep your business compliant. Make sure you also pay any license or permit fees before due dates to avoid penalty fees.
Taking Action: Keep track of due dates for corporate paperwork, as well as fees on your calendar so they don’t sneak up on you.
4. Rally Your Team
The holidays may be extra stressful for you and your staff, so it’s important to show them how much you appreciate them. That could come in the form of giving them a pat on the back for a job well done, hosting a holiday party, or giving them a little something extra in their stocking.
Showing your gratitude now will ensure that they’re happy working for you, and they’ll help you make next year the best ever.
Taking Action: Look at your budget and see what you can afford to give per employee. If you don’t have any discretionary cash, find non-monetary forms of appreciation, like giving an extra vacation day, or letting the staff leave early on Friday.