Shivani Gupta is a small business owner, business and leadership coach, author and keynote speaker.

Shivani shares why it is important to set new goals.

WOULD you be happy with an extra 20per cent revenue in your small business?

In December, my spa business revenue was up 20per cent on last year. Want to know how? I often talk about how important it is for small business people to work on their business rather than in their business. This year I spent more time in my business pre Christmas.

Being there helped to boost revenue for a few reasons. Productivity was up because the boss was there. It shows your staff you are supporting them. I was there with fresh fruit and water to make sure they were eating well and happy. I was there to complete whatever task needed to be done and be front and centre for customer service.

I was there to anticipate and solve problems rather than being on the end of the phone or email. One day we were fully booked but one staff member was not rostered on. I simply asked if we could get that person in and allocate rooms differently and suddenly we didn’t have to turn people away.

I still think it’s very important for small business owners to work on the business and not in it all the time but my experience reinforces that being hands on, particularly at key revenue-making times, is vital too.

The important task now is to set goals and plans for 2015 or review your goals if you plan on a financial year basis. A new year is an opportunity to re-energise yourself, re-energise your business and get rid of old thinking.

Don’t make the mistake of setting the same goals as last year with less hope. It is a waste of time.

Your business environment will have changed. To avoid the same old stuff, why not make a list of all the things you should let go. Then make a list of three things that should continue.

Less is more too. You can’t fix everything. Pick areas you are passionate about because you will be more willing to invest time and energy there. Set no more than three goals in each of those areas.

I am a big believer that it is hard to separate business and personal goals, particularly for small business people. Take a holistic approach. Those goals need to be SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely. Take action on these goals only. Don’t get distracted. Goals are 70per cent more likely to be actioned if you write them down.

Make a screen saver, put them on the bathroom mirror or pin them to your noticeboard. Involve your staff in setting the goals or at least make sure they know the goals, why they are important and how they can help achieve them.

Finally, set rewards for yourself and your staff when you achieve those goals. Writing the reward under the goals is a great incentive, so put aside an hour in your diary this month to set or review your goals.

Happy New Year.

*Article from Newcastle Herald, 11th Jan 2015