The end of the year is a time to wrap up loose ends, as well as a time for new beginnings. Getting everything done at the end of the year can be a little hectic. This checklist can help you prioritize your time and make sure you set yourself up for a fantastic new year.
==> Checking Your Vision Statement and Goal
Perhaps the most important thing you can do at the end of the year is to see whether you’re on track for your long-term goals and vision.
It’s very easy in business to get sucked into the day-to-day operations. You get so concerned with hitting the next immediate target or putting out the most pressing fires that you lose sight of your ultimate goals.
The end of the year is a good time to review those goals. Are you on track to hitting your vision?
Here’s some tips for setting goals that are actually keep-able!
==> Review Your Budget for Next Year
Look over this year’s financials. How much did you earn? How much did you spend? What’s your return on capital?
Look at the highest ROI aspects of your business. What can you expect over the coming year? Do you expect profits to increase or decrease?
The end of the year is the ideal time to set your budget for the next year, because you have all the data for this year to look back on.
==> Schedule Seasonal Promotions
The holidays are a fantastic time to end the year with your accounting books “in the black” (meaning that you are making cash!) through the addition of some holiday promotions and specials.
It’s important to run promotions that are actually useful – and not overly aggressive – to your loyal readers. You want to benefit them and not penalize them through aggressive marketing. Don’t ask your loyal customers to make up for the sales you didn’t make earlier in the year but instead set out ways to really benefit them!
Here’s some tips to help you do seasonal marketing right!
==> Employee Evaluation Time
Even in a small company, you should still evaluate your employees and freelancers on a regular basis. Are your employees pulling their fair share? Is your freelancer the right fit for your business? Are there employees that aren’t performing as expected? Is the VA becoming more valuable to you over time as you train them?
GE’s former CEO Jack Welsh famously fired the company’s bottom 10% performers every year. You don’t have to go to this extreme, but keeping your staff force lean and sharp should be a part of every company’s credo.
==> Make Large Purchases
Often times the end of the year is the best time to make big purchases. If you have leftover income, you can write off the expense under this year’s taxes rather than next year’s taxes.
Generally these kinds of purchases would fall under the capital intensive equipment category, also known as a Section 179 purchase. The maximum amount you can spend in this category is $125,000 and you must put the equipment into use by the end of the year.
If you meet these criteria, you can save a lot of money on taxes. The key to remember however is that you should not spend money just to “save money” as the net impact is still spent money that you may not have had in the budget to begin with.
==> Back Up Your Files
Finally, take the time at the end of the year to back up your files and do a full backup of your web hosting account. At least once a year, store all your most vital files on an offsite backup facility or at least an external hard drive stored at another physical location.
These tips will help you wrap up all your loose ends at the end of the year and get you set up for a profitable launch into the next year.