With Christmas approaching fast and the end of the year looming it’s easy to “just write these last few weeks off” and decide to pick things up again in 2019.
But, these last few weeks of the year provide you with a great opportunity to get yourself set up well for the New Year. Then you can jump straight in and start achieving your personal and business goals ‘right from the get-go’.
We’ve put together 4 things you can do in these next few weeks to get your agribusiness ready to roll in 2019.
1. Determine your position
Before you start making huge plans for 2019, it’s important to stop and do a stocktake of where you are now. Here at ABDI, we’ve spent the last few months reviewing our programs and our operations looking for areas needing improving or fine-tuning. Now we’ve started putting plans in place to address them.
We recommend you do the same. Start with this question: “How has this year been for me”?
Then dig down into a bit more detail and ask yourself:
- Are there things in my business that I need to stop doing?
- Are there processes or systems that I need to start implementing?
- How is my relationship with my people? Do I you need to consider making changes to the way I manage staff, family, contractors, advisers, etc or how the team works?
- How are my finances – do my budget and forecasts need to be reviewed and updated?
- Did I achieve the goals I had set for 2018? If not, why? If so, let’s celebrate our success!
2. Create goals for 2019
Why wait for the New Year to start setting goals? While you’re reflecting on the year that has been, take the opportunity to also start planning for the future. What do you want to achieve in 2019? How can you go about doing this? How do those nearest and dearest to you feel about them too?
Your goals can be about any area that is important to you, but we recommend having some set areas to structure your goal setting, such as:
- Health / Fitness
3. Say thanks to your people
In the final dash to the end of the year, it can be easy to get caught up in the Christmas Crazy and forget to focus on your people – family, staff, contractors, advisers, etc. Most people who run small businesses will agree that it’s your team that is the most important contribution to the overall business success and operation. While we spend a lot of time talking about setting goals, understanding finances and ensuring processes are efficient, it’s just as important to touch base with your team and thank them for the year that has been.
Sure, you may be doing this as part of your annual Christmas party, but think if there is another way you can pass on your thanks to staff. Perhaps it’s something as simple as taking that extra 5 minutes to talk to each member about how they felt the year went, and what they would like to see in 2019 (might even help with your yearly review and goal setting)!
Spend some time showing your team that you appreciate their contribution to the business and make sure to celebrate the successful end of another year with them.
4. Enjoy some time off
This sounds obvious, but in agriculture, where work, personal, family, and recreation all have a tendency to blend together, it’s critical that you take time out from the work side of things. It’s the holiday season – take some time to hang with family and friends for a couple of days and take a breather.
It’s not only good for you personally, and will let you start the new year feeling refreshed, but it may also be more beneficial for your business. How so?
More often than not, when we take time to have a break and focus on something different, our subconscious still bubbles away in the background and puzzles out some more of the complex issues we are facing. This results in those ‘lightbulb’ moments, where suddenly, you have the answer to your issue – all by simply stepping away and taking a break!
And besides the fact that taking a break is good for your business, it’s also good for those around you. In a family farming situation, taking time off for yourself can set a good example for the rest of the family, and encourage everyone to take some time to enjoy the festive season and spend time doing other things they love.
A Big Thank-you!
As 2018 comes to a close, the team at ABDI want to say a big thank you for being part of the journey as we work to empower people to make positive changes in their agribusiness – that will benefit the business owners themselves, their families and their clients.
In 2019, our programs and advisory services will continue, so if your New Year’s Resolution is around business improvement – you know who to talk to!
Looking forward to working together again in 2019.