As we approach the end of 2017, and welcome 2018, it is the perfect time to reflect on the ups and downs of the past year. Whether things went swimmingly or there’s room for improvement, it’s always important for budding entrepreneurs and established business owners alike, to create plans and prepare themselves for what the new year will bring. I’ve created my best tips for preparing yourself, your business and your diary for 2018.
If you’re still a stranger to social media, then now is your time to get up and join in. You may be a little late to the party, but there’s still plenty of time to set up business and personal pages. Not only can you promote yourself and your brand online, to millions of people, you can also utilise sites such as LinkedIn to create valuable contacts with other business owners, potential investors and even future employees looking to be part of a growing organisation. Make the most of your social media accounts, and be sure to keep anything you wouldn’t want your colleagues or stakeholders to see, out of the public eye – maintain professionalism whilst remaining approachable for the best possible result.
Get tech savvy
It’s not enough to set up a couple of social media accounts and start interacting with the community, make 2018 the year that you get truly tech-savvy. Technology is speeding ahead, with AI becoming more prominent for managing customer relations including the likes of chatbots and VR offering incredible and unique experiences to users, now more than ever do you need to understand what technology can bring to your company.
As exciting as technology is, it can also bring a more important edge to your business. The importance of the likes of HTTPS sites and encrypted information, as well as data management changes – digital knowledge is no longer optional in the new year. Make sure that you do your reading and protect your business!
If you haven’t already discovered the world of podcasts, make 2018 the year that you start listening. Podcasts are a great way to utilise your time spent, traveling, driving, working out or even before bed. These short bouts of information, often spread across around half an hour to an hour, allow you to plug in your headphones and learn and digest a subject, breakdown of important news topics or even brush up your skills in a new language. Not only do podcasts offer a great way to absorb information, but you can also get other tasks done whilst listening, for example, a few hours at the gym can be used to both work your body and mind. Time is precious and scarce, podcasts can help ensure that you use every minute available.
If you’ve managed to reach success without being meticulously organised up until now, then you’re probably very lucky or have a great support system behind you. Make 2018 the year that you invest in software to ensure you maximise your time and money, by ensuring you track and plan everything. If something goes wrong, you should be able to easily retrace your actions to find out what and why a problem occurred. Organise your computer and workspace by using any downtime over the holidays to sort files, both physical and digital, labeling everything appropriately, archiving old but important files and disposing of any that are no longer relevant. You should also invest in a good hard drive, in order to back up all of your work, files, and databases. Finally, you should aim to change and optimise all passwords to be secure. This will ensure that there is a reduced risk of your information and personal data being hacked or stolen.