As the new business year begins in January and the old financial year comes to a close in February, March brings business owners keen to assess their performance over the past twelve months with the goal of becoming more competitive in the year to come. To achieve your business goals, a simple list of financial New Year’s resolutions may be in order.
The Financial Year That Was
For many businesses, the 2011-2012 financial year was a mixed period, with opportunities and challenges constantly arising to challenge the creativity of business owners. In the ever-shifting economic climate where old trading partners have to be served while looking toward the major players of the future, many business owners will remember the past year as a time of fast change and quick thinking.
South Africa’s membership of BRICS, the Eurozone crisis which is set to make a dent in our export figures, and cautious optimism from the economies of America and China combined to make the year challenging for some. With 2012 set to be just as uncertain, business owners should remain focussed and keep costs down as they navigate the business climate in the year ahead.
Seek New Opportunities
As the opportunities for trade increase in some parts of the world and decline in others, business owners who have an export focus should gear their businesses to accessing as many markets as possible. Excellent business websites, e-Commerce readiness, and a dynamic and adaptable staff will allow your business to compete globally, no matter how small it is.
In an uncertain economy, one of the best strategies for optimising profits is to keep costs relatively low. You may want to hold off on upgrading to larger premises for the moment, or may opt to incentivise your current staff to take on a larger workload rather than hiring unnecessarily. By working smarter this year, you’ll maximise your bottom line and be ready to prosper.
Invest in the Future
Every crisis has its end, and while your business survives the current downturn you’ll want to invest in new products and services to keep your competitive edge in the future. Keep your R&D focus strong, and explore new products and markets to help your business grow.