BY STEVE CHAMBERS, VICE PRESIDENT OF RETAIL AND BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT@THEUPSSTORE
We’re now in the final days of 2022 and it is a popular time to look back on the year: What were your favorite memories? Where did you succeed and fail? What was the most challenging aspect of the year? These types of questions aren’t just good for personal growth but also key to business growth. As we approach the new year, the most successful businesses will reflect on the year, look for improvement opportunities and use their findings to set actionable goals. Here are three tips to help guide your reflection and help you set better goals to elevate your business in 2023.
Review Your Business Insights
The first step in setting actionable business goals in the new year is to check your notes – your notes being your business insights. While not all businesses will have high-tech business intelligence solutions, every business should have some form of insights from the year. These insights should be considered your study guide for goal setting. Take a deep dive into these insights and highlight items that stand out to you. Look for trends within your records and consider where you were most successful financially throughout the year. Were there any consistent factors that appeared during your most successful months? Be sure to repeat that process with your least successful months.
Studying these insights will give you the clearest picture of how your business performed on a macro and micro level and will ensure that you are prepared to set actionable and impactful goals for 2023.
Ask for Opinions on What Worked and What Didn’t
It may seem like business leaders should be the experts on all, but the truth is that being humble and consulting an outside opinion is one of the most impactful steps a leader can take before setting new year goals. Your employees and coworkers were likely involved in conversations and projects that you were not a part of throughout the year. As a result, they can bring new perspectives on the past year and may also have different takeaways from the business insights that you may not have considered. Asking for an outside opinion will give you more background on your business and can open your eyes to a goal you may not have considered.
Another place to look for an outside opinion is your network beyond your own business. Consult peers and other business leaders on what worked and didn’t in their operation. At The UPS Store, we pride ourselves on having a collaborative and robust network of franchisees that can ask each other questions and share learnings.
Look Beyond Just the Results
While considering your past results is a key step in planning for the future, it should not be the only source of inspiration for your goal setting. Inspiration can and should be found in a variety of places. Be sure to read thought leadership from your industry, stay up to date on national business trends and follow the news from your local area. These places can be a good source when developing business goals for the upcoming year.
I recommend looking into your personal passions for inspiration. Consider adding a goal that aligns with an area you care about. If you’re an animal lover, look for ways your business could support that passion. If you’re a parent, consider a goal that would support other parents in 2023.
Your mission statement is another source that can inspire big ideas and business goals. At The UPS Store, our mission is to facilitate business growth and help entrepreneurs actualize their ideas into business success. This mission has inspired multiple goals. Just this year, we launched our Start Small, Grow Big Program together with Junior Achievement – an organization that helps teach entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy to children all across the country. Don’t just look at your revenue streams for goals. Some of the best business ideas can be found in your personal and business passions.
Maintaining a successful business is about avoiding complacency and looking for opportunities to grow, innovate and improve. With these three tips, you can better identify those opportunities and set more actionable goals to better your business in 2023.