Summer is a great time for new projects that revitalize our lives. If your spouse or family is creative, you may have a lot of those summer projects that require your time and attention at your home this season. But what about a summer project for your business? It could be just the thing to spice up your business and help you rejuvenate your staff and your energy at work.
Here are seven ideas to help you heat things up at work and reap the rewards that result:
1. Move from reactive to proactive. Work on fine-tuning one small area of your business where you’re constantly experiencing fires. How can you anticipate and prevent these fires? It might be putting some procedures in place, training staff, getting help from a vendor, or perhaps even firing a client that is too demanding. When you take the first step toward prevention, even if it’s a baby one, you’ve made a tremendous amount of progress toward controlling the situation rather than if you just remained in reactive mode.
2. Look at one part of your processes and make a small improvement. I’ve just recently implemented these new articles in my newsletter (let us know how you like them). That’s one example of a really small change that I made in my processes that will improve my service to my customers.
3. Systematize something that’s worked in the past and repeat it. No need to reinvent the wheel if you’ve found the magic formula. Do the magic formula over and over again, perhaps more often, and you’ll increase your results. For example, if you’re good at working with people on the phone, then write down the process you’re using so that you’re discovering what you say that customers like. Then do it intentionally 100% of the time as part of your newly systematized process.
4. Listen to your clients and roll out a new service offering that they are asking for. A huge part of the battle for getting new clients is getting people to trust you. Why not leverage the people who already trust you – your current clients – and serve them in a new way. Increasing your revenue per client is a great way to help your clients even more and to boost you bottom line at the same time.
5. Hone your skill. We spend a lot of time working on our core competency – the service we deliver to clients – and getting better at it. Why not get better at an accounting skill? This could include understanding reports better, learning how to job cost or product cost so that you understand your margins better, learning how to review accounts, and a host of other skills that will help you become more effective at analyzing your business’s financial data. Sometimes we forget accounting is a skill we can learn just like we know our core business – especially those of us who are reluctant about numbers.
6. Measure. How do you know something is working unless you measure it? Add procedures to measure the results that are important to you; then you can begin to see where you need improvements. These include numbers such as revenue, expenses, cash flow, and profits down to the unit you want to measure them. When you do this you’ll naturally be able to improve your financial results in your business.
7. Celebrate. Stop for a second when you reach a goal and celebrate all the hard work you did that paid off and got you there. Give yourself a reward, practice gratitude for what you received, and then set your next goal.
Which one of these projects speaks to you the most? Mark your summer calendar right now to take one step toward working this project into your summer plans so you can heat up your business.