Now that we’re a few weeks into the new year, it’s the perfect time to look at your small business as whole and re-evaluate your on-going strategies. By taking a step back and looking at everything you, it helps put things in perspective and allows you to ask: Is there a smarter way to do this?
Each year, I look at Origin Story’s entire business model and processes. I look at everything, such as:
- Proposal writing strategies
- Rates and fees
- Social media strategies
- Methods of interacting and sharing with clients
- Backup and archiving strategies
- Software & Hardware
Those are just a few. For each of them, I ask:
- How well did they work?
- What successes or challenges did they present?
- Are there other solutions out there?
- If I go in a different direction, what's the cost and time to make the transition?
- Will this solution work better for my team, the business, and my clients?
For example, this year we’re transitioning to a cloud-based archiving solution. Previously, we were using LTO-6 tape for all of our long-term archiving needs. After reviewing the cost and maintenance of a LTO tape system, we found that cloud-based services were more flexible and cost-effective for our needs. LTO had its challenges, it wasn't perfect, and it was working, but the cost of cloud storage has come down dramatically in the past few years, making this option economically feasible. Each solution has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, but after weighing things out, it just make sense to make the switch.
Looking at your entire business model each year is a great exercise in asking the hard questions. Think about how to best answer the hard questions and set goals on how to meet them. You might not always like the answers, but they’ll provide clarity on how to, or in some cases not to, move forward.