I was recently asked for one piece of advice that I hope people would take from my book. My answer “take time out to smell the roses!”

Well not actually the roses, but you need to be able to step out of your business for long enough to think and challenge your business. This can be hard to do when working 24/7 and hence for many business leaders the Christmas break is a great time to challenge their business.

Did you get the time to have a break and do some planning for the upcoming year?

A good basic start of year review checklist might include;

Basic start of year review checklist

1. List the key business concerns you have.
2. List your successes for the past 12 months.
3. List your failures for the past 12 months.
4. List the key trends in your business.
5. Undertaking a SWOT.

 But don’t stop there, this needs to be converted into an action plan.

 Your Start of Year Action Plan

1. For each of the items pose a solution.
2. List your goals for the coming year.
3. List your key success factors.
4. Prepare an action plan.
5. Communicate your action plan with your staff.

Some people find this an easy process, other find it very difficult to challenge their own thinking and approach to business.