It’s that time of year again, when people are declaring their resolutions for the year ahead. You know that the vast majority of them will not stick with it, and invariably it will be to lose weight/eat better/exercise more. There is genuine motivation and intention, but the implementation is lacklustre, and most will give up within the next few weeks – otherwise gyms would always be full. These personal goals fail often, in part due to lack of accountability, and there is nothing stronger holding people to it other than “wouldn’t it be nice if….”
Resolutions are generally about changing your behaviour in some way, and if it’s done too drastically, with too much change from your normal behaviour, it will not stick, and can result in very negative emotions. Psychologists say that most resolutions are not only destined to fail, but can actively harm you when they do. They have been described as “exactly the wrong way to change our behaviour,” and are often poorly planned and don’t take into account how human habits and willpower really work.
Research has shown that while resolutions are often followed for the first two weeks of January, they tend to start to slip shortly after that and are often in a full backslide by February. Willpower isn’t a steady, infinite ability that all people are born with. Brains have a finite amount of willpower, and exercising it takes energy and training just like exercising your body. Many resolutions are too broad and unrealistic, and if they are abstract then it makes it difficult for your brain to focus on them.
Personal New Year’s resolutions are based on the premise that we are flawed and need to fix something that’s broken. Some negative emotions can be motivating, but these ones are not. Even if resolutions are successful at first, they can still backfire. You might think that your life will change if you reduce your debt or change your eating habits. But if it doesn’t, it can discourage you and cause you to revert back to your old behaviour.
Personal resolutions can work if done correctly, but business resolutions should not be ignored. Making a resolution or several resolutions for your business can make a significant difference to it in just one year. A business resolution is much more tangible than a personal resolution, as a personal resolution tends to be less measurable, whereas for a business you can have much more concrete figures. It is not just about the numbers though, there are many other resolutions that you can make to improve your business. Here are a few suggestions:
Effective delegation is a way to get a better work/life balance, and avoid burnout. It’s uncomfortable giving up control, but with clear communication of objectives and deadlines, and a bit of training, you can delegate tasks without micromanaging.
Be More Active on Social Media
Social Media is ubiquitous, and not just for superficial socializing. Real business is happening on all of the platforms, but don’t become overwhelmed by all of the possibilities. Choose one or two platforms that are best suited to highlight your business, and focus only on them. Try to post something just three days a week, then daily. Implement Open Graph on your website to ensure that everything shared is going to look the best that it can.
Google has found that up to 90% of people check reviews before making a purchase or hiring a company. Some of the biggest websites in the world are sites that are devoted to reviews. The importance of reviews cannot be overstated – future blog post topic – but for now suffice to say that the Internet runs on reviews, and prospective clients are much more willing to trust things that contain reviews. Of course, you cannot go and write a hundred reviews for your own business, but you can make a habit of writing reviews for other local businesses.
Regular Business Strategizing Sessions
You probably already have weekly/monthly meetings to discuss your business. At Radar Hill we hold monthly meetings with all staff, where we can propose new ideas, update the office on how the previous month has been, and generally plan for the following month. We also have a weekly board meeting where we discuss the projects that are currently being worked on. But it is also important to regularly have strategizing sessions that are focused on the general running of a company, rather than what your business specifically does. Devote some time every week or every two weeks with just yourself, a business partner/manager, or get a business coach (everyone deserves a coach – we can recommend a couple of excellent ones), and enumerate exactly what your long-term business and personal goals and vision are, and what actions need to be taken in order to achieve what you want. Have these regular sessions to keep you on track and focused on the business of running a business.
Enhance Your Online Presence
Having an effective online presence in 2018 is vital for success. More and more people are turning to their phones to find products and services – make your website be one that is found. There are several ways that you can achieve this, the first step being to talk with Radar Hill! We will create a plan that will increase your online presence. This can include having a Responsive Web Design, Schema installed, or running an AdWords campaign. By looking at the Analytics of your website, we can determine exactly what brought visitors to your site and what they were searching for once they arrived. Talk to us to ensure that you are giving your site visitors and prospective clients a frictionless experience.
Make Your Resolutions Have Sticking Power
There are attainable ways to keep your resolutions. Get rid of the negative framework. Look at what you want rather than what you think you should do. Instead of pledging to fix something you dislike about yourself, make a list of what you already love about yourself and your life and focus on getting more of that. You can also list the things that cause you stress and negative feelings, and try to introduce the opposite of those things into your life.
Realize that resolutions to be successful are not a one-time change. Things won’t suddenly flip, and there is not necessarily a straightforward path. Focus on one improvement at a time so you don’t become overwhelmed. Big goals are long-term projects and habit changes that take time to fully implement – but it is possible.
1. Start with small changes
-Doing something big and drastic and expecting yourself to keep it up for a year is unrealistic.
2. Write down your resolution every day or pin it up
-If you can see your goal everyday it will help to keep you motivated, and ensure it is always within sight.
3. Have a strong reason “why”
-What exactly is the result, and make sure your “why” is stronger than your “why not.”
4. Seek accountability
-Don’t tell everyone you know about your resolution, but tell the right people who will help to keep you on track and motivated.
Resolutions can be great ways to steadily change something about your life – as long as you do it in the way that is right for you. The resolution needs to be purely for your wants, and the implementation has to be right. A business resolution can be much more tangible, with the focus being on growing an entity, rather than personal changes. Whatever you do in 2018, may it be as successful as you want it to be. If you would like to discuss making improvements to your website, please get in touch.