Don’t Make New Year’s Resolutions for Your Business, Make Wise Choices

8576618657_219e8c91d0_zPhoto by Chung Ho Leung

It’s the start of a brand new year and many of you will have sat down over the last few days to make New Year’s resolutions for your business. I’m a big believer in the power of goal setting… so it may surprise you to know that I don’t advocate making resolutions at New Year.

There is, of course, absolutely nothing wrong with setting achievable and realistic targets for your business. Unfortunately, in my experience New Year’s resolutions don’t typically fall into this category.

Why is this? 

The problem with making resolutions at New Year is that we often get caught up in the the magic of the season and decide on targets that are just too lofty. No matter how determined you are, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to completely transform yourself or your business overnight!

Real change takes consistent work over time. In fact, psychologists have shown that real change is forged by slowly adapting our thinking in order to create new neural pathways. In other words, if you want to make a real difference in your business, you’ll need to concentrate on gradually changing your working habits in order to create better ones.

Progress is really important in business and it is vitally important to make sure you’re regularly setting and reviewing targets.

So how can you do this in a way that works?

If you’re determined to make a positive impact on your business in 2016, there are many effective ways to do it. Below are nine of the most useful pieces of goal-related advice I share with my coaching clients.

Keep these in mind when it comes to target setting and you’ll find your efforts are much more successful than they have been in the past.

  1. Forget year-long resolutions. Instead of setting one big goal for an entire twelve months, aim to work towards smaller quarterly or monthly targets.
  2. Think about the realistic rather than the ideal. After all, you can only start from where you are right now.
  3. Give yourself permission to consider what you really want for your business rather than what you think you should want.
  4. Don’t try to do it alone: appoint yourself an accountability partner to use as a sounding board and keep you in check.
  5. Sit down regularly to assess how well you’re doing, what’s gone well and what didn’t go the way you expected it to.
  6. Give yourself a pat on the back for each success, however small. Running a business isn’t easy and it’s important to give yourself the credit you deserve!
  7. Recognise that it’s generally the progress that matters, not the end result. Big changes happen one small step at a time.
  8. Don’t keep going back to goals that don’t work, if you haven’t been able to make progress towards them after numerous attempts, it may not be the right direction for you to be moving in.
  9. Focus on getting better at reflecting on your past successes and challenges. That way you’ll be better equipped to make wiser business choices in the future.

Did you find these suggestions useful? I’d love to share more advice with you throughout the year. Why not connect with me on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to see regular blog post updates?  

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