4 Ways Managers Can Keep the Business Moving Forward in 2024

by John Waters

As the new year begins, managers across all industries are presented with the opportunity to set the tone for success. The first quarter of any given year allows for business owners and managers to set goals, boost morale and build new strategies that will set the business up for prosperity for the months to come. Here are four areas managers should focus on to start the year off right with their teams.

Reflect and Set Goals

As managers start the new year, it is important to take time and reflect on the successes and challenges of the previous year. Doing so will provide important insights that will help in the new year’s strategic planning. During this time, managers should speak with employees to gain feedback from the previous year, look over performance goals and identify areas where the company has opportunities to improve.

Once finished going over the previous year, it is time to set clear goals for the upcoming year. These goals must be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound, otherwise known as SMART goals. Whether the company is looking to increase sales or attract new clients, setting clear goals provides employees with a proper direction moving forward.

Management and team members must hold monthly meetings to review the goals set for 2024. During these meetings, go over projects and initiatives that were set for the teams to report their progress. This is critical for the implementation of these initiatives and, ultimately, the success of the goals. Also, during this time identify areas that are not working so strategies can be adjusted accordingly. The earlier management and employees identify these issues, the faster they can be rectified.

Effective Communication

Communication is at the heart of all effective leadership, particularly at times like the new year when new initiatives and goals are being set. Management teams must allow for open communication with team members to ensure everyone knows the company’s objectives, priorities and expectations for the year.

Managers must hold regular meetings, at least weekly; take the time to have individual check-ins with employees; and provide regular email communications with the entire company to keep everyone informed of goals and initiatives. Managers should also create an open-door policy to listen to feedback from employees, allowing them to present new ideas that may be beneficial for the company. After all, employees are the ones dealing with clients and daily tasks on a more regular basis. Along with encouraging the presentation of new ideas, create opportunities for employees to present concerns that can cut down on unnecessary issues and help move the business forward.

Plan Out Business Goals

As goals are put in place and employees know their individual roles to achieve those goals, managers must focus on how to ensure these efforts are directed to the most important aspects of the business. Breaking down larger goals into smaller more manageable ones will allow for better management procedures and tracking.

Managers and employees must work together to create action plans, assign responsibilities and set deadlines for projects so nothing slips through the cracks. By prioritizing different tasks amongst employees, managers can optimize resources within the business to maximize output.

Support and Empowerment

Managers must always show support for employees as they are the backbone of any business. Showing support will help boost morale and productivity, which will in turn lead to a happier and more effective work environment. While providing direct and clear direction, management must also provide employees opportunity for creativity and innovation.

Invest in developing employees as they grow in their roles. Reward achievements. Show gratitude where it is needed. Provide positive feedback. Give a gift card to the employee who brought in the most new clients for the month. Doing something is the idea. Show appreciation to employees. Providing a reward system will only boost productivity and allow managers to show the employees the respect they deserve.

The new year is well on its way. As the year continues moving on, seemingly faster than the previous one, managers and business owners can set the stage for a successful 2024. By setting goals, reflecting on past successes and downfalls, setting up direct planning, engaging with employees and prioritizing communication, managers can propel their business toward new success. By having built a strong foundation, managers and business owners can create better opportunities for innovation, growth and success as the year unfolds.

John Waters is the principal of Waters Business Consulting Group, LLC in Scottsdale, Arizona. Waters Business Consulting Group helps business owners, management and executives achieve their goals and grow their business.

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