7 Small Business Ideas For A Successful New Year

We’re about to head into the new year, and if you’re self employed or a partner with someone else, I assume your goals are to grow in the new year.

With that being considered, there are steps you need to take to help you be successful. After all, almost no one ends up becoming a success without a goal, plan or tools to get there. Here are some ideas for you to maximize your performance.

1. Index cards

This might seem like a strange recommendation, but stick with me. There are many benefits to using index cards that you might not have thought of. The first is that they come in multiple sizes, although I think the best are 3×5 cards. The second is that you can get them in multiple colors, which can help you if there are multiple directions you want to consider. The third is that you can let them be loose and individual or buy them attached spirally; each of these methods has its own benefits. The fourth and last thing is that it’s easy to carry around with you, whether in a pocket or purse/container, which means you can easily make notes almost anywhere without needing a full folio.

2. Cellphone

I know, everyone has one. The thing most people don’t do is use the recording feature to speak their notes into them. This is something you can do while walking or even driving (although if you’re driving you probably should have on earphones or use the internal car speakers so you’re not holding the phone in front of you). Voice recognition has gotten pretty good, to the extent that it’s even possible to record an entire article into a voice program or even into an email.

3. Create a spreadsheet

You don’t have to keep your Excel program open if it’s not your style, but it can help with the other two options once you have ideas you want to start plotting. You can also take a piece of paper and draw columns onto it to write your ideas down. The other two items are great for initiating ideas, but spreadsheets are great because you can put down everything you came up with in one space to make it easier to review.

4. Planners

These days planners are used for more than scheduling. Many of them have places where you can write down goals and dates you want to achieve them. Some even have places where you can write full notes, draw, and a host of other things; it depends on how you process information.

5. Co-working spaces

The worst thing about working from home is that it’s always just you there to interact with; it works for some people, while others might need a little more socializing. There are many places across the country where people can go to work for free or low monthly costs. You can get a desk or table to work at while surrounded by a lot of other self employer people. Sometimes you need a little bit of a noisy background; sometimes you need a person to bounce ideas off or just talk to. Most of these places will offer a free day a week or month… and all have free internet.

6. Delegation

This is different when you’re self employed… at least most of it is. The basic idea is to find services provided by others that you can afford to pay for. It can be something you can do on your own that takes time away from you working on your business or things you’re not fully competent to do (own up to it; it happens). Virtual assistants, cleaning people, even accountants and bookkeepers; if you’re making money these types of services can help you stay on the path of your business goal.

7. Budget

We scare people when we talk about budgets, but it’s the one thing that makes sense whether or not you’re in business. You can’t spend money you don’t have, and you’ll never know how well you’re managing your money without a budget. If you need training, supplies, marketing or wish to use the delegation option we talked about, you need to know if you can pay for it. If you’re making a lot of money, you might need to invest some of it for both tax purposes and long term planning.

There are easily more than 7 ideas out there, but these are basics that should put you on the right path to having a successful new year.