Did you know that every seven to ten years, you’re an entirely new person because your cells have totally regenerated and replaced their systems during that time? You can really see it when it comes to kids. Look at your child’s pictures from two years ago, or five years ago, and your mind will be blown. It all happens so fast.
You may be starting this business because you’re a parent of a baby, and you don’t want to leave them. You may have started this business because you have teenagers and you have more time to start. Whatever your reasons for today, they will be different in a few years or even less. Whatever is today will not always be. Your body changes, your kids change, your spouse changes, your mind changes.
Check-in with Your Finances
How is your financial plan going? Have you stuck to your plans that you made to start with? Did you contribute what you said you would to your retirement accounts, to your savings, to anything you planned? What went differently so far than you thought it would? Is the plan you have still working to build the kind of future you desire?
Have a Family Meeting
One reason you started your business was likely to be around for your family more. How is that going? Does the family feel as if the business is living up to the potential you believed in when you started? What would the family like to see happen differently than is happening now? If you now have an entirely different thing happening - for example, you’re an empty nester or your kids are grown now and you’re divorced - what, if anything, do you want to change now about your business?
Check the Metrics for Business Growth Beyond Income
Income is only one sign of business growth and success. The main reason is that you can be making a lot of money right now, but something is in the works that is going to eventually lower that income. For example, are your email lists still healthy? Are you still getting a lot of targeted traffic to your online real estate? Look for growth outside of income, so you know what you’re reevaluating.
Check Out New Technology
Hopefully, the technology you are using is still current. You’ll want to ensure that you’re using the right technology for your business, and sometimes that will mean making a big change to please your customers to give them more customer care or something that you’re not giving them now. For example, if you’re not using chatbots for customer care on your site, do you need to?
Check Out New Processes
It’s easy to get so involved in the success of a business that you forget that there may be a new process out there that is easier, faster, and more productive than whatever you’re currently using. Take the time - at least yearly - to study new marketing funnel ideas and ways to put your customers first and solve their problems.
Spend More Time with Your Colleagues
When you work for yourself, you may think you don’t have colleagues, and maybe you don’t yet, but as you grow your business you will become a household name to someone out there who does something similar to you or even the same as what you do. Staying up to date with technology and information is easier if you’re part of your entire industry.
Study Your Audience All Over Again
Just like you change, your audience may change too. The demographics will likely stay the same, but values people hold dear changes over time. A good example that I like to use is old soap commercials for Dove. They’ve been around such a long time that some of their old commercials seem sexist and rude even. However, they’re not, they’re just a symptom of the times they were living and what their audience needed and wanted from them. Today, Dove is all about body positivity because that’s what their customers want.
Rewrite Your Big Dream Goals
Maybe the goals you have for your life now have drastically changed from what they were when you began your business. That doesn’t always have to make you change your business, but you do need to rewrite your goals and dreams every now and then in order to ensure you’re going in the right direction.
Refresh Your Branding
Occasionally it’s a good idea to refresh your business branding. Websites get old looking as the technology changes, and people start liking the looks of different things or valuing information in a different way. If you keep your finger on the pulse of your industry, your audience, and your heart and soul, you’ll be able to refresh your branding in a way that pleases everyone.
Everything changes, including technology and the world. Because of this, remember that you need to take time every year or so to revisit your goals and ambitions to ensure that your business is giving you the lifestyle you want and that you still like the lifestyle it’s providing. What you think you want today may be very different tomorrow, and that’s okay. Your business can grow and change with you.
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