Welcome to 2012!
I have always been the guy to look around the next corner to see what new things are coming. This new year is no different. There will always be new technology and new trends to check out. There will be tough times and times when things go perfectly. I am interested in all of it and you should be too. It’s the looking that matters most.
My Dad had a saying that I mentioned in a prior article. He said, “You will always find what you are looking for. The trick is to keep looking.” That is all the wisdom you need as you start the long road from January to December. The more you stay focused on the right things in your life, the better a life you will have by the time 2013 rolls around.
What is it that you want?
Do you want money? Money is not that hard to find. Sell something, get another job, or offer your services for a fee. I didn’t say it would be a lot of money, but it is there for the taking when you do the right things to get it. On that note, are you doing the right things to earn your money? If it all comes from one place, you are probably doing it wrong. If every financial planner says to diversify your long-term income, then why are you not doing the same with your monthly income? I am not saying drop what you are doing to find something else. What I am saying is that this is a new year and there are new lines of products for you to sell, new ways to get to new customers, and new people to help you bring in more profits. Are you ready to look?
Do you want a bigger business? How big? What does a bigger business look like? Is it adding more outlets or is it expanding the location you already have? If you can’t paint the picture clearly, you can’t find it. If it is more outlets, there are plenty of spaces open to rent to add another store. If it is online, adding a new webpage or buying another site name is as cheap as it will ever be. If you want to expand what you already have, you need to look at the use of the space. What are you paying to grow versus how much more will you earn by growing. In a brick and mortar business it is easier to see the usage. How many more square feet are you adding and how much more can you sell per square foot? Focus on the cost when you focus on growing a bigger business. It has to be worth the cost.
Do you want to lower costs? Look at your P&L Statements. There are as many people who do not keep up with their profits and losses as there are people who dig through them like they are searching for buried treasure. What are your biggest costs? Payroll and all the costs associated with hiring others is one of the biggest and most controllable costs on that statement. If you are going to focus on lowering costs, you have to start with the cost of being a boss. After that, you have rent that can be renegotiated and utilities that can be curbed. There is some money to be saved in those monthly statements. Are you going to look?
Do you want more customers? They are there waiting to be invited. What is your message? Does it look inviting to someone just learning about your business or are you focused on existing customers and leaving the rest to chance? If your advertising doesn’t educate, inform, and invite, then you need to make changes. Also, brick and mortar friends, go outside. If you have more than one message plastered to the front window of your store, you need to start scraping until you do. Also, if any advertising has been up for more than one year, it needs to come down. Focus the way a customer would and you will get more customers.
Finally, do you want a better you? That better person is there to look back at you in the mirror. What will you change in 2012 to make yourself smarter, healthier, and more productive? Like I started with, there is new technology and trends to check out. Get organized with your efforts. Your time is your most valuable asset. What you do with that time is what makes it priceless. Start by looking at how you are spending your time each day. Log it into a journal. Once you have the time wasters listed, you will see where you can cut out the things that don’t help you and start using that time to get a better you.
As for me, this year my goal is to publish my first book. It is something I have been writing and re-writing for years. It is time to get it out there. That is the success I am looking for this year.