The beginning of the year is a time to reflect, take stock of the year past, and plan for the year ahead. As you personally prepare for 2018 – making resolutions and goals to better yourself in the year to come – It is also important to have a clear plan, goals and vision for how your business will continue to grow this year.

If you haven’t done so already, take a moment to get yourself and your business ready for the upcoming year. Hit the ground running this year by gaining clarity of the direction you want your business to go and identifying the steps or changes you need to take to get it there.

Here are six crucial tips to consider as you begin to prepare. Read on for a special offer on a complimentary clarity session as well:

  1. Reflect on what worked in 2017

    Start the year on a positive note by going over your wins. It’s easy to overlook the progress you made in 2017 by only focusing on what went wrong or what you have yet to accomplish. However, it is important to recognize and celebrate what went right. Identify your successes by making a list of three (or more) accomplishments from 2017 that you are proud of. Decide with your team on how you can do more of these actions in 2018.

  2. Reflect on what you learned, or what you would do differently from 2017

    Learning from the past is just as important as focusing on the future, because your past performance can reflect your future performance. Every experience (for better or worse) can be a ‘teacher’ if we use it well. Take the time to understand the mistakes you made in 2017 and reflect on what you would do differently moving forward. Take the appropriate actions or changes needed to see better results in 2018 – and be sure to stick with them!

  3. Choose your 2018 results

    Define your business goals for 2018 by identifying where you would like your business to be by this time next year. Goals, backed up with a clear action plan, can provide focus, direction, and a sense of purpose for your whole organization. Define goals for how to grow your customers, revenue, profit, self-development, team development, etc. Be sure to have a clear definition of success, and establish how and when you will measure success.

  4. Identify clear actions to be taken during each quarter, or every month, to reach your annual goal

    Once you’ve determined your overall 2018 goals, work backwards to set milestones for each quarter, or even every month. Having smaller, short-term goals will help you and your team stay on track to achieving your annual goals. Next, identify the actions that must be made in order to achieve these goals. Be sure to specify who in your organization will do what by when.

  5. Identify what specific areas/skills you would like to grow in, and identify how you’ll do it

    As you plot out ways to grow your business this year, don’t forget to also seek out ways to grow as a leader. You will never regret the time and resources spent investing in yourself. Identify a few skills you would like to learn or areas you would like to improve upon in 2018 and make an action plan for how you will achieve them. Consider taking an online course, checking out a new podcast, reading a new book or traveling to a new place.

  6. Identify how you will help develop your team to achieve your desired results

    Establish ways to motivate your team and hold them accountable for the goals you’ve identified for them. Work with each employee as you monitor their progress towards their short-term goals, providing rewards that reinforce positive behavior, increase their sense of progress and keep them motivated. This can include recognition in front of peers and other rewards that don’t cost a lot of money but are meaningful. Act as a role model to help inspire your employees by setting high standards of accountability for yourself and your behavior.

To help you further understand what actions you must take to achieve your goals in 2018, I am offering four complementary clarity sessions. To claim one, please email me at MONTE@MONTEWYATT.COM or call 515-222-9193.

Also, mark your calendar for the dates of our UPCOMING 2018 WORKSHOPS! Call today to learn more about the January incentive to join our Seminar Club.