Spring Clean Your Business
By Diane Helbig
When the weather gets better we tend to Spring clean our homes: open the windows, clean inside and out, and fix whatever broke over the winter. Consider doing the same
thing for your business. It’s a great idea to periodically clear out the cobwebs and dust bunnies to increase your effectiveness and improve your results. Start by taking an inventory. Take a look at your clients, resources, and processes. Are they in alignment with your goals? Are they working well or need some tweaking? Let’s take a look.
Once a year it is helpful to take stock of your current and past clients. Engage in a deep dive assessment of them. How is your relationship? What work are you doing for them? What percentage of your total revenue are they providing to you? How well do you know them?
You may find that you have clients who are not serving you well. They may be taking up a lot of your time without a commensurate return. They may be difficult or demanding. There’s nothing wrong with firing a client or two. It frees you up to pursue the kinds of clients you want to be working with.
Another benefit of taking stock of your current client makeup is to see if there are any people or industries you should be going after. Maybe you got a new client last year and started doing work for them that really energizes you. That can be a great indicator of future prospects to seek.
If you want, you can also review past clients, those you aren’t working with anymore. It may be time to reach out to them to see if they have any current needs. Or it may point to other companies or people you could court.
This includes a lot of possibilities including vendors, referral partners, networking venues, and partners. Brush off the contracts or arrangements you have with your current vendors and take a good look at them. Take a look at your referral partnership and networking venues. Do they still serve your business? Are you getting the best deals and customer service from your current providers? Over time your business changes and therefore, your needs. You should stay on top of how your vendors are meeting the needs of your business as it evolves. It may be time to change where you are showing up or volunteering your time. It may also be the case that your referral arrangements have run their course, or maybe they never created quality referrals for you.
How are you operating your business on a daily basis? Is it effective? Are you maximizing your time and the time of your resources? Take a good look at the HOW of your business and make adjustments as needed. Remember, it’s easy to get into a routine and fail to realize when the routine stops being effective.
If things are not running smoothly or important tasks are not getting done, there are holes in your systems. Now is the time to fix them. In essence, this inventory allows you to clean up your current situation as well as plan for the future. And there’s no time like Spring! So, take some time, get out of your business, and take an inventory of where you are in relation to where you want to be. Make any adjustments you need to make and carry on.
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