New year is often the time we look at our business and ponder, what’s next?

But the reality is, now’s the ideal time to get the jump on the year ahead and consider the improvements that need to be made to ensure the success of your business moving forward.

With that in mind, here are six things to look at in your business operation right now, to position you on the front foot come 2022.

Your branding

When we talk about branding, we really mean messaging and it’s all about asking who are you communicating with in terms of potential and existing customers and how effective is the image and message you present?

Do you really know who your target audience (as in ideal client is) and are you putting your best foot forward when it comes to the messages you share, the image you portray and the products you offer?

More importantly, are you meeting them in the places they’re likely to hang out?

Your customer

On that note, who exactly is your customer? Do you know your customer base and understand them? Have you taken the time in the past 12 months to listen to what they have to say?

In other words, when was the last time you identified your ideal customer (because they can change over time), and have you sought their feedback on the current services or products you offer?

It’s only when you understand your marketplace intimately, including what piques your customer’s interest and what turns them off, that you can successfully target your business activities towards them and enjoy repeat clientele.

Your success

Business owners should be assessing this consistently by measuring your numbers, but how successful has your operation been over the past 12 months?

Are your figures up or down on the 12 months prior and can you clearly define why that’s the case?

When you know what’s working and what isn’t, you have a better chance of moving forward with success.

Your motivation

This element is important but often underrated, what continues to motivate you to do business? The reality is, your motivation might change over time and it’s critical to pay attention to that.

Motivation equals the ‘why’ of business. It’s the thing that inspires you to get out of bed each day and do what you do, offering the type of business you continue to offer.

When you understand your drivers, the path to business success becomes that much clearer.

Your vision

Where do you envisage your business moving forward? Who will it involve and what will it entail? Every business owner should revisit the vision for their business on a regular basis as a means to help propel it forward.

This involves assessing your business strengths, business opportunities, weaknesses and threats along with the way your business continues to serve your lifestyle and ambition.

Your actions

The foundations of business might be plans, vision, motivation, and most importantly your customer, but without action they are just pipe dreams.

What were the activities and actions that worked for you in the past 12 months and what are the actions you intend to undertake moving forward.

Action is imperative in business. It bridges the gap between dreams and activity. The actions we committed to 12 months ago are the results we enjoy now, and it’s the same moving forward.

So, what action has worked this year, and what actions have you prioritised for next?