How many of your clients come back again and again? It’s a lot more cost…
It’s one of my favorite times of year, and no it’s not necessarily because of all the Christmas lights and delicious goodies everyone is baking right now, although that definitely doesn’t hurt; in business, it’s time for an end-of-year review and planning for next year. And that makes me happy. So let me share some of that excitement with y’all and give you the rundown of how you can do a review of 2021 and start getting your plans together for 2022.
If you haven’t done an end-of-year review before, here’s the basic rundown of what you need to be doing over the next couple weeks to properly close out this year and prep for the next.
So, to close out 2021…
#1 You need to review the plans and goals you had for this year and see how you’ve done. So look all the way back at January to what you were doing and what your goals were for this year. Did you reach those goals? Did something happen this year that threw a wrench into things and made you make some major changes to those plans? Did you just not carry things out like you wanted to or should have? Some things you can’t help and some things you can, so celebrate your wins, learn from your mistakes, applaud the necessary flexibility needed at times, and give yourself some grace. But it’s still important to take stock of what went right, what went wrong, and what you can do to get even better going forward.
#2 Catch up on any bookkeeping and metric tracking that you’re behind on. Data is what’s going to determine a lot of your goals and plans for next year, so you need this stuff at hand. Set yourself a day or 5, whatever you need, and catch up on any of your bookkeeping that you’ve let yourself keep putting off for however long. And don’t forget all your KPIs too, your profit per session, rebooking rate, average client spend, all that good stuff. Add up, calculate, and get those numbers in front of you, per month, per quarter, and for the year.
#3 Analyze those numbers. Your finances and KPIs for the year need to not only be written down or typed up somewhere but you need to take some time to really look at them. Notice any trends, mistakes, successes, obstacles, anything you want to improve going forward. If your net income isn’t what you want, that’ll determine what you do in your plans for next year. Raise your rates to increase revenue, cut expenses, upsell more to increase average spend, whatever. You’re not going to be able to make really clear plans unless you have a really clear understanding of those numbers.
#4 Check in with your current business plan. Your branding, your pricing, your ideal client, services, all of those components that make up your business as a whole. Is everything still how you want it or are there changes you’d like to make moving forward? And most importantly, what data is showing you those changes are actually necessary?
Now, prepping and planning for 2022…
#1 Prepare everything for tax season so you can get that out of the way early. I mean, there’s nothing quite like rushing a packed box of receipts over to your accountant the day before the tax deadline, but it’s not exactly ideal, right? So since you took that time to catch up on all your bookkeeping and your financials should all be sorted, go ahead and prep anything else you need for tax season, so you can just send it over to your accountant, or plug in the numbers if you do it yourself, and be done with it as soon as possible once the new year rolls over.
#2 Create a new marketing strategy for the new year. Check in with what your ideal clients are doing and planning, check what events are going on next year in your community, mark any holidays or seasonal stuff you want to do, check out how local businesses have gotten eyes on their marketing in the past, and start putting together a real strategy for next year. A general overview to start is great and then break it down by quarter, then month, then week.
#3 Schedule any upcoming changes. So remember you did a review of your business plan, seeing if your pricing, your ideal client, your branding, all that stuff was still good to go. Well, if you want to make any changes to any of it, put it on your schedule. No excuses, it’s a deadline that has to be met.
#4 Mark all regular events you’ll attend or are interested in attending. Whether that’s local community events, promotional stuff going on in your area, lunch and learns, employee appreciation days at this or that local business; whatever it is, go ahead and mark everything in your calendar so it’s not going to be forgotten going forward as you get busy in the day to day stuff of business and life.
#5 Set very clear, very specific goals. Whether that’s a certain client number each week or month, a certain revenue or income total, whatever, be extremely clear about your goals for the end of the 2022. When you’re sitting there next year doing this kind of review, what do you want it to have turned out like? What wins do you want to be sure to have? Now, break that down by quarter, by month, and by week so that you’re constantly staying on top of those goals and working toward them and November and December of next year don’t sneak up on you and before you know it another year has passed without making much progress.
And bonus tip…remind yourself it’ll never happen perfectly. All those plans and the goals are great and really necessary, but we live in this wonderful world called reality and in reality, life happens and plans can go up in smoke. So while I’m saying making all the plans and push forward and do everything you can to reach those goals, also be flexible and give yourself some grace along the way if things don’t go quite as perfectly as you hope.
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