We all have our personal resolutions when the new year comes around: lose weight, exercise…
Tips for Entrepreneurs & Freelancers: End the Year on a Good Note
There’s no doubt that 2020 has been a period of challenge and change. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or a freelancer, it’s imperative that you take some time to reflect, recharge, and refresh before the next year starts.
Having all your finances and admin in order is key to making sure that you leave no pending tasks or responsibilities behind. But taking a moment to pause and reflect is no less important. Together, such practices can help you kick off the new year with a bang!
Reflect on this year’s lessons
Nearly 70% of entrepreneurs said the pandemic altered their business plan or forced them to make changes that may impact their success. By evaluating the ups and downs of this year, you can make sure to really absorb all the teachings 2020 has had to offer and ensure you’re on the right track.
Start by looking at the strategies that worked well and appreciate the successes. If there’s been someone who has particularly helped you along the way, be it a partner, co-worker, or client, reach out and let them know. Really, it’s as simple as picking up the phone!
However, know that with success comes failure too. Don’t be afraid to evaluate the problems you faced and think about how you can learn from them. Perhaps you should implement a new policy? Or is there a specific skill that you need to improve upon?
Also, it might be worthy to review your rates – as your own boss, it’s up to you to adjust your pricing based on your know-how, value, and expenses. By doing some competitor analysis, you can even access additional insights and see how competitive you are. Lastly, take some time to review existing processes and systems. Is there anything you could improve or any bottlenecks you could remove to be more effective?
Get your finances in order
Getting caught up with your bookkeeping might not be the most entertaining end-of-the-year activity, but trust us, it’s worth doing. Take a close look at your business performance and try to draw an overall picture of your profits, expenses, and losses. The best way to do this is through accounting software that can help you stay organized without having to rely on piles of bills and paper documents.
Just like that, review your payroll records, tax deductions, records and receipts, and any other important client documentation. Ask yourself whether you need to renew any licenses or permits so that you don’t get stuck on formalities once you’re getting up to speed with work again.
Do the digital cleanup
When it comes to your projects, check that all your tasks are wrapped up on time to start the new year afresh. Always plan for holiday time off in advance, both by overcommunicating with your stakeholders and setting up important notifications such as out of office emails.
After that, plunge into the digital cleanup. Make sure that all your important files are properly backed up and centralized in one place – ideally on the cloud. Then, archive your old documents to be able to access them any time without them cluttering your interface.
Organize your calendar and streamline your contact lists. Remove all duplicate records and centralize your databases to be able to easily access whatever you may need. Also, go ahead and optimize the apps and tools that you regularly use, whether it’s in the form of downloading updates or organizing your data in a smarter way.
If you have some time to spare, explore new tools that could make you even more efficient in 2021! These can be productivity-related apps, but also those focused on networking or mindfulness.
By taking a look both at the micro and macro factors of your business, you’re on the right path toward setting realistic goals for the next year.
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