A new year is coming around and you just know that 2018 will be your year! In January gyms are full and grocery trolleys are healthy as we make our New Year’s resolutions. We all know how this goes: “This year, I will lose weight/be more productive/eat healthy”. But why don’t we also include some resolutions relating to our business/career. “This year I will be more organised/review my accounts on a monthly basis/do more networking” However the sad reality is, that come February, 80% have failed their resolution. By the end of the year, only 8% have succeeded.
So why bother making a New Year’s resolution if the odds of succeeding are that low? Here’s why: studies show that those who make a resolution with a better technique are 11x more likely to reach their goal. SJC+0’s ambition is to help you achieve your business goals not only to help you land in the 8% that succeed but to increase the 8% altogether. Everyone should know how to make a better resolution and succeed.
Here, we’ll reveal the simple, yet powerful secrets to substainable business changes through better resolutions.
1 | Make it small and explicit
This is the most recurring expert advice: break big goals into smaller milestones. In the study on New Year’s resolutions, one of the reasons resolution-makers succeeded 11x better was that they made their goal small and explicit. For example, if your business goal is to “be more organised”, make resolutions like “for one hour every day I’ll do paperwork” or I’ll hand over my paperwork every month to SJC+0. Small goals are not only more achievable, but every time you succeed at it you solidify yourself as the boss and you build a habit of success.
2 | Adjust your expectations and make the goal realistic
One reason so many Business New Year’s resolutions fail is due to self-confidence turning into overconfidence and unrealistic expectations. We think achieving our goal will be fast and easy, and that the change will be big and rewarding. When our expectations aren’t met, we feel discouraged and we give up. So when you say do more networking be realistic and diary in one networking event per month – keep it real – and if you’re nervous networking let SJC+0 act as your companion.
3 | Don’t expect it to be enjoyable every day
Making a resolution can be exciting, but there’s a caveat: When you’re excited about a goal, your brain is tricked into believing that the resolution will keep you happy, and that you don’t really need to make the change. (Spoiler alert: you need to actually change something to change something.) So you’re fired up to get organised and do monthly management accounts. Then you’re shocked to find out you don’t actually enjoy accounts, even though you loved the thought of getting organised. What you love is running your business so let SJC+0 do the accounts and you get on building the business with the extra information gained each month from the management accounts.
4 | Re-write your self-story
Just making a small, explicit and realistic resolution is not enough. You need to make it fit your identity i.e. your view of who you are and what’s important to you and your business. You’re constantly trying to stay true to this perception. Decisions that match it feel right, decisions that don’t match it feel wrong. Who your accountant is should feel right if it doesn’t change it and I’m happy to chat.
5 | Finally, design a resolution you can keep
Now you may be thinking “how should I, very concretely, define a resolution I can succeed in?”. These 5 “rules” can help you design a better Business New Year’s resolution that’s made to stick:
- MAKE IT SHORTER-TERM.
- MAKE IT SPECIFIC.
- MAKE IT MEASURABLE.
- MAKE IT TIME-BOUND.
- MAKE IT EASY.
Finally, accept setbacks. No one is perfect, so setbacks will happen however committed you are. So you didn’t manage to switch off your emails after 7pm don’t worry. It’s what you do after the setback that counts: instead of giving up because you “already failed”, tell yourself “it’s ok” and just pick up where you left off.
What you do every day, most days, is much more important than what you do once in a while.
So despite the downbeat statistics, we encourage you to pursue a Business New Year’s resolution. Do it the right way and help turn those statistics around!
If you’d like, we can help make a plan for 2018!
We wish you a happy New Year and successful resolutions!