Friday, January 4, 2013

New Year, New You: The Home Based Business Owner's Keys for Success in 2013

I don't ever have “resolutions” for the New Year.  Instead I like to reflect on the previous year, see what I did well, see what needs to be changed, and then convince myself that "all sins are forgiven" and I can start fresh.

I have operated a home based business for over 8 years.  In that time I have come to realize that January of every new year is pivotal for a home based business.  Here are 4 keys to help you get on the right path to success in 2013.

  1. Set Realistic Goals. It would be wonderful if I said my goal for this year is to sign $100,000 in web design contracts, but that's not realistic for my circumstances. No, I'm not selling myself short.  Instead I'm refusing to set myself up for failure.

    You need to honestly evaluate your circumstances.  Why are you working from home?  Is out of necessity?  Is it out of desire? What goals can you realistically achieve with your circumstances?

    That being said, don't settle for mediocrity.  Review your previous year's accomplishments and set goals that will not only push you to do better than you did before, but also will allow you to stay motivated.

  2. Write Down Your Plan of Action. Yes, write it down. I know how it goes; you have your great plan and it's all in your head.  You know exactly how many hours you plan on working, how you're going to market your company, and how to go about getting leads and clients.  The problem is that it's all in your head.

    Writing down your Plan of Action keeps you accountable and helps you to stay focused.  It makes your goals real and gives you a tangible road map to look at and see how to accomplish your goals.  After all, our minds have a way of making excuses.  We can always explain why we didn't do what we were supposed to do (and it's never our fault).  There's power in that piece of paper or that spreadsheet that's staring back at you.  It lets you know whether you're doing what you're supposed to be doing with your business to be successful.

  3. Implement Your Plan of Action.  Keep track of what you do every day.  Your Plan of Action should have your daily goals listed.  At the end of each day write down (fill in your spreadsheet) what you actually accomplished.  How did you do in reaching your goals?  Did you fall short today?  What can you change tomorrow?   By tracking your goals daily you may be able to nip a bad habit in the bud quickly so that your month can end on a great note. Did you reach or surpass your goals?  Repeat the same routine the next day.

  4. Evaluate Your Progress.  At the end of the month take all the numbers in your Plan of Action and create a month end report. Ask yourself, “Did I meet my goals?” If the answer is “yes”, great! Do the same things next month.

    Did you fall short of your goals? Look at your month end report.  The numbers don't lie.  You should be able to see why you missed the mark. Was it due to lack of prospecting?  Did you not following up with enough leads? Figure out what went wrong and change it for the following month.  

Running a home based business is not rocket science nor should it feel like a chore.  You are a home based business owner for a reason and with a few basic steps you can be successful in 2013.

Share your success story.

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