End This Year Strong to Best Prepare for Next Year

Don’t Coast Through December and Put Things Off Until Next Year

As the year winds down, our focus and drive often do too. There are seasonal activities and parties to distract us. And two major holidays, Christmas and New Year’s Day, interrupt our work routine. All this combines to tempt us to slow down and relax. Then we can hit next year full on and fresh.

Yet how we finish one year establishes the foundation for the next. Be diligent to finish this year strong. Then you’ll be ready to make the most of next year. Here are some tips to wrap up this year wisely.

Optimize Staffing

Look at your staffing situation. If you need to make changes, don’t delay. Make them now. Hire new staff and promote qualified employees. What a great Christmas gift to give them.

This optimization, however, also includes letting people go. Yes, December is a bad time to end someone’s employment, but is there ever a good time? If you wait until January second, they’ll complain just as loudly and think just as poorly of you. But if it’s time to say goodbye to an employee, don’t be heartless, either. Do whatever you can to soften the blow. Do it now so it’s not hanging over your head for the next month.

Complete Pending Projects

You certainly have some projects nearing completion but that aren’t done. You have a decision to make. You can put them on hold until next year and complete them then or you can double down and take care of them now. Finishing them now opens January for new projects. Isn’t that the right way to start a new year?

Fix One More Problem

Every answering service has a pain point or two. Some process isn’t working, or some department struggles. Maybe a piece of technology isn’t working correctly. Don’t carry this over to a new year. Pick this one problem and strive to resolve it now. Just imagine how much nicer work will be once this concern is no longer an issue.

Seek to Minimize Tax Liabilities

Now is the time to take a preliminary look at what your tax situation might be. What can you do in December to lessen the taxes you pay next year? Maybe you need to move some planned expenditures for next year into this, or perhaps you should delay some spending until January. Check with your accountant now to see what you can do this year to make next year financially better.

Set Goals for Next Year

Some people are big into goal setting and others not so much. Wherever you fit on the goal-setting spectrum, plan for next year. What major initiatives do you want to accomplish? How do you want to make your answering service better? How much do you want to grow? Reduce expenses? Increase profitability?

These are all areas that suggest major goals for you to have for next year. And if goalsetting isn’t your thing, figure out a way to let these major initiatives guide what you do for the next twelve months. Then a year from now, you can look at all you’ve accomplished.

Conclusion

Does this list overwhelm you? Don’t let it.

Pick what you can reasonably do and then do it, while still taking time to enjoy the season with family, friends, and staff. The key is to not cease all nonessential work in December and coast your way into the new year. All this accomplishes is pushing more work into January and delaying your start at embracing the opportunities a new year brings.

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