October 22, 2016

Setting Your Sights on the New Year

2016 racing lane

The start of a new year is an opportunity for every small business to get a fresh start when it comes to goals and motivation. With 2016 just beginning, it’s a great time for you to take a look at your goals and the direction your business is heading. Here are some tips for getting your business off to a great start in the new year.

Set Trackable Goals

To get your business on the right track for the new year, you need to figure out what you actually want to accomplish. But setting goals is just one part of it. You need to set goals that are going to be actually achievable and easy to track through the entire year. You might even consider breaking up your overall goals into pieces that you can work on each month.

Keep Your Goals Accessible

new year goals

You also need to make sure that you keep your goals in mind through the whole year. To do so, it can be helpful to keep your goals displayed somewhere where you’re likely to see them fairly often. Print out a list of your goals and keep it above your desk. Use these goals as headers in your calendar or to-do list app. Or keep them anywhere where they’re likely to remind you often what you’re working toward.

Be Open About Your Intentions

If you’ve decided to shift any of your business goals or intentions, be up front about those changes with your customers or clients. Create a new years blog post outlining your goals or intentions or share them with your email list. This can help to hold you accountable and ensure that your customers are on the same page as you are.

Reward Your Hard Work

trophy grab

A rewards system can also help keep you on the right track throughout the year. Set specific rewards or activities for your team to celebrate when you’ve accomplished one of your main goals. This can keep you motivated even after the magic of new year’s resolution season has worn off.

Look At What You’ve Already Accomplished

You likely have a lot of aspirations for 2016. But don’t discount what you’ve already accomplished in 2015. Taking a look back at what you accomplished (or didn’t) throughout the past year can give you some perspective and maybe even some inspiration. Plus, looking at any mistakes you may have made can help you learn from them so that you don’t walk down a similar path this year.

Take a Break


It’s a great idea to get a running start on the new year. But if you’ve worked straight through the holiday season, particularly if that’s a busy time for your business, that motivation can wear off quickly. If you didn’t get a sufficient break over the holidays, consider taking one at the start of the new year. This can give you some much needed perspective and help you really get off to a great start in 2016.

Racing LanesYear CalendarTrophy GrabFireworks Photos via Shutterstock

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Annie Pilon - Staff Writer

Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found on her personal blog Wattlebird, and exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

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4 Reactions

  1. Hi Annie,

    Happy new year to you. What has really helped me to achieve my goals is changing my habits. These were habits that I didn’t even realise I had. But every time I didn’t achieve my goals I started to notice these habits that were stopping me. You think they are a part of your personality but they are not.

    If you are continuously failing your goals, look back and think why. What stopped you? What affected you achieving the goal? Check out your path along the road towards your goal, realise where the roadblocks are and then avoid them the next time round.

    Habits can take a while to alter, so don’t beat yourself up if you fail first time round. Practice makes perfect!


    • Annie Pilon

      That’s a great point! I think a lot of us have some bad habits that we could stand to lose – it just takes a lot of work. Happy new year to you too!

  2. Aira Bongco

    I already have my goals written down. But more than that, I think it is more important to have some action steps so that you can easily reach your goals.

    • Annie Pilon

      Absolutely! If you don’t plan out how you’re actually going to achieve your goals, then you don’t have the greatest chance.

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