5 Things For Business Owners To Consider In 2021
Whilst 2020 was amongst some of the roughest years many business owners have experienced, it also came with some silver linings. We were forced to pivot, push innovation and evolve – changes we’re certain will continue into this year too. January is the ideal time for business owners to take a step back from the day-to-day rat race and consider the direction for a new year. Look back on what you’ve learnt, think about improvement that could be made and assess if the business is still heading down a path you’re 100% happy with.
To make your mulling easier, we’ve put together five areas that warrant consideration for any business in our new normal.
JobMaker – is it time to hire?
Whilst some businesses faced very tough times in 2020, others were fortunate enough to be in an industry that flourished. Then there were those brave enough to start new businesses during the pandemic, who may now be at a point where they can grow.
The JobMaker scheme is a key part of the Federal Government’s plan to get the economy moving again, making hiring much more achievable for many. If you employ someone between 16 and 35 who is currently on the JobSeeker scheme, the government will reimburse you up to $200 per week for their wage expense. That’s a sizeable chunk, no matter what industry you’re in! Of course, there is an eligibility criteria, which you can read more about here.
Before hiring, we always recommend that you speak to your accountant first, to ensure it makes good financial sense. Check out our team of friendly faces here to set up a chat with one of them.
Digitising your business has never been more important
If ever there has been a time to digitise your business, it was last year. If you still haven’t jumped on that particular train, what are you waiting for? Whilst business has returned to near-normalcy (for now), working and purchasing habits are forever changed. Zoom meetings will continue, online shopping is only growing and the expectations your audience has on the quality of content, website and social media is continuing to shift.
The days of getting by with an average website are over. Not having a social media presence is simply losing you business.
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Covid safe planning
Returning to office work requires all businesses to have a Covid Safe Action Plan in place. If you’re already back and don’t know what we’re talking about, take action immediately before you cop a fine. The government’s coronavirus website is an excellent resource to get you up to scratch.
Other aspects to consider are more practical; do your desks need to move so they are further apart? Are your hygiene standards still good enough? Shared mugs can no longer be a thing!
Growth vs profitability
A behavioural change that will be drilled into many of us for the foreseeable future, if not forever, will be to take less risks; you truly never know what’s just around the corner. Prior to 2020 you may have had a growth mindset which informed most of your business decisions. Whilst that still has a place, focussing on profitability is where we recommend you turn to in 2021. Set yourself up to never have to face the stress and uncertainty you experienced last year.
Consider which processes could be optimised to save some coin, what expenses you have that could easily be cut without impacting on your employees or culture. A change that many businesses have already is to get rid of permanent or large office spaces in lieu of hotdesking, or offices that can hold some of the team, but not all – to be shared on a rotating roster. This example is an achievable way to cut one of your biggest operating costs, whilst continuing to offer your team the flexibility of WFH that they’re now used to.
Empathy is the new black
One of our core values is being people-focussed, and an important extension of this is awareness of mental health and wellbeing amongst our employees and our clients. Never has the need for empathy, for company values, a meaningful mission and simple kindness been more stark. How are the working conditions of your employees? Could you be doing more to support them and their mental health?
Did you know that Gen Z base purchase decisions on connecting with a brand’s values, before considering price point? This is a consumer trend that has stretched beyond those under 25. Your audience wants to know what you stand for. Could you answer that question succinctly?
There’s a lot to think about under this particular point but it’s arguably the most important of all. Go back to the drawing board and do a branding exercise if you need a starting point.
If you need a hand with business planning, or want to chat through any of the above points, we’d love to hear from you.