Here at the Hub we’ve downed tools for a couple of weeks, spent time with our families and enjoyed the festivities. And now, after a quality break, it’s time for some forward thinking and getting clear on how you’re going to grow and develop your micro business in 2013.
To help, here are 8 New Year’s Resolutions which I believe are essential to a healthy micro business (and micro business owner). So take a read and decide which you will commit to in your business this year.
1. Aim to work less and earn more
Many micro business owners I speak with tell me they started out on their own because they wanted more money, increased flexibility and the ability to spend more quality time with their family. However, this dream is often crushed by the reality of excessive hours, brain overwhelm and a to do list that never ends. Coupled with the worry of financial security, micro business owners often undervalue their worth and end up working twice as hard for less.
This year commit to earning what you are worth. Don’t compete on price and instead look at how you can add value to customers who are willing to pay for what you provide.
2. Set goals that scare the pants off you
Where do you want to be this time next year? What do you want to have achieved for your and your business? Be specific. Is it time to write your first book? Get recognised with an award? Create an e-learning product? Win that dream client? Whatever it is, don’t allow fear to hold you back. And remember, with baby steps, anything is possible.
3. Spend quality time each working day doing activities that will help you find and keep customers
In micro business it’s incredibly easy to get overwhelmed by the day to day stuff. And whilst you can’t afford to let this slip, you also need to maintain that forward thinking perspective. That’s because without it your business will at best stagnate, at worse back pedal. To avoid this it’s well worth spending 60-90 minutes each day focusing totally on finding and keeping customers. There are a whole host of activities you can do in this time such as:
- Work on your social media.
- Plan your first autoresponder campaign.
- Write for your own blog – or better still guest blog.
- Send handwritten notes to your best customers.
- Plan an offer that helps you stand out from the competition.
- Get super clear on who your target market is.
And don’t be mis-led. There are a whole heap of things you can do to market your business for free. If you want some ideas, check out this post by Chris Dyson.
4. Surround yourself with people who inspire your business goals and support you to achieve your potential
The people you choose to surround yourself with will make or break your micro business. And that means you need to select your network wisely. Watch the people who doubt your dreams or undermine your confidence. For sure they may have something to teach you, but this negative energy could seriously undermine your potential.
In comparison, hunt out those people who challenge you to succeed. Who inspire you with ideas. Who believe in you and who open up doors for possibilities that alone you could not have imagined. You may find these people in your family or your friendship groups, but you may also find them on Twitter, through networking or by Hanging out with the Hub. The trick is to keep an open mind.
5. Work hard then reward yourself with quality play time
Never forget what this is all about. You should work to live, don’t live to work. At times this can be a challenge. Especially if your business is an extension of yourself or your passion. However, don’t lose sight of what else is important in life. Those precious times with your children, friends and family can never be regained so if you do work hard – take something back by playing hard too.
6. Outsource something
Make 2013 the year when you will hand something of your micro business over to someone else. Could you hire a VA to take on some of your time consuming paperwork? Perhaps you could clear some of the household responsibilities with a cleaner. Maybe you could reduce the strain of your tax return by staying on top of your books with a bookkeeper. The deal is, if you free up your time by delegating some of your non-core responsibilities, suddenly you’ll discover more time to focus on those aspects of your business that only you can do.
7. Become an implementer
If you’re the sort of person who is brimming with ideas but never really implements any of them, make 2013 different. One of the key differences between business owners and super successful business owners is simply the amount of stuff they make happen. So if you’re held back by fear, doubts or the “manyana” syndrome, overcome it and commit to getting more stuff done…
8. Plan ahead
And to make implementation possible, you need to plan ahead. Lists are a great discipline to adopt and work really well. List your annual goals, then break these into monthly objectives. Next plan your activities for the week and finally before each day ends, plan for tomorrow. Then tick stuff off when each task has been completed. This simple working practice can quickly become addictive. I promise you’ll feel good as you see your achievements being ticked off.
And if you want to discover some more brilliant planning tips, I strongly recommend Brian Tracy’s Eat That Frog and Dan Kennedy’s No B.S Time Management for Entrepreneurs. You can read a review of each in our Store.
Over to you…
What have I missed? What do you think underpins micro business success? What resolutions have you committed to for 2013? Please let me know in the comments below.
P.S: We’ll be talking more about New Year’s Resolutions at the January Hub Hangout next month. So if you’ve like some motivation and ideas to kick-start 2013, simply click here.
Today’s Micro Action
Make a list of New Year’s Resolutions you will commit to for 2013.