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Business Year-End Checklist

by Richard Avdoian

The end of the year is a great time to step back from your daily routine and operations of your business and commit time and resources to reflect on the good, bad and ugly of 2014 and prep for 2015. For many businesses this is a slow time of the year and others a busier time. Regardless, it is important to designate the time for a candid review of your business.

Here are six tasks that will help you prepare for a promising, productive and profitable 2015.

Personal planning. Business owners are thinking about their New Year’s resolutions, but what about the status of your 2014 resolutions? Take time to do an “internal personal audit” especially related to your personal health, family and recreation. Has your business given you the time to be actively engaged in your personal life? If not, how do you plan to change this?

Strategies. Now is the time to do a final review of the 2014 strategic objectives you set for yourself and the business. Did you accomplish all you planned? If you did not, why didn’t you? Take the time to explore the reasons why and what you could have done differently to accomplish your goals and identify the new goals you plan to add in 2015.

Operations. This is an ideal time to give your business a face-lift by applying the principles of 5S, which is typically associated with the manufacturing industry but can also be applied to business in general. The 5 S’s are Sort, Straighten, Shine, Standardize and Sustain. What better way to spruce up your environment, de-clutter and kick off the new year than with a well-organized, clean and fresh environment?

Human resources. Year-end performance reviews are standard in many businesses. Businesses have often learned the hard way that lack of feedback related to performance and expectations is one of the biggest complaints among employees. Even if you have previously completed a formal evaluation, the end of the year or early January it is a great opportunity to sit down with employees and discuss their needs and concerns, offer feedback, and jointly set personal and professional goals for 2015.

Get feedback. Select an employee from each facet of your business and schedule a luncheon or breakfast. Ask each person to shed light on what has worked, what hasn’t and what you can do in the department and the business overall to enhance all facets of operation and continue to strive to offer exceptional products, services and customer satisfaction.

Celebration. The holiday season is an ideal time to not only celebrate the holidays but also show your appreciation for the dedication and efforts put forth by your employees to make your business possible. It does not have to be anything expensive but simply an informal gathering where you can personally mingle with your employees, express your gratitude and wish them a wonderful holiday season. It is also a great time to share your business goals for 2015. Publicly acknowledge that you need their skills, feedback and dedication and ask them to join you in working to take the business to the next level.

Now you are all set and ready to take on the business world, achieve your 2015 goals, and address the challenges of running a productive, profitable business.

Richard Avdoian is president/CEO of the Midwest Business Institute Inc., a business consulting and training firm.  For information about training and seminars, contact Richard at 618-972-8588 or

Submitted 9 years 183 days ago
Categories: categorySmart Business
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