Preparing your business for the year ahead

With the Christmas period behind you it’s time to start looking at the year ahead, and how you will use your time to improve your business.

In our poll before the festive season we asked how you would use your time to improve your business. Most of you rewarded the year’s efforts with a well-earned break, with 35 per cent opting to take a rest from your business.

However, many of you took the opportunity to prepare for the year ahead, taking a range of different measures to enhance your business. Most popular was making financial forecasts for the coming months in order to manage cash flow better.

Cash flow will be a major issue in 2008 for small businesses, with warnings about the likely credit crunch coming from all angles. The Confederation of British Industry’s director-general, Richard Lambert, warned recently that the British economy faces a ‘difficult year’, but emphasised that it is important not to exaggerate the risks and talk ourselves into a more serious downturn.

Also high on your list of priorities was the way that you market your business, with 24 per cent planning to take a more focused approach to selling. It’s important as a niche player or smaller business that you are successful in finding your target market. This means focusing your efforts in the right direction, doing your research and holding onto the business that you generate.

As a small business you are in the unique position of being able to offer a truly personal service to your customers. This can be a real string to your bow, helping to ensure your clients come back to you time and again.

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Business management

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