No matter how small your small business, routines are what are your best return on investment. Routines permeate your small business, whether it is how you track clients, take payments, or thank your clients. Its worth an investment in your time to be sure your small business routines are working well.
Client intake is your first steps in business success. You have done your marketing and your clients are contacting you. Clients call, send text, email and meet you at an event. I have seen client contacts on back of paper plates too.
When there are so many ways to connect, it’s up to us as a small business to streamline how to track incoming clients. I am a big fan of consolidating this incoming information. Consolidating can come in the form of adding this information to a single sheet of paper or adding this information digitally right away. Give yourself a time each day and each week to consolidate this information from all the incoming spots, create a paper or digital folder, and take next steps with the client information. Is your next step an appointment with your client? If so, be ready with your paper planner, Outlook or Google calendar or your online scheduler.
How to reinforce this routine for yourself? You can start with a checklist to remind you of the steps. Your client checklist can be online or on the front of the client folder.
Taking payments and paying bills are important routines for all businesses. Have an established date for both of these. For payments, determine the frequency of deposits. Again, funds come from many sources such as paypal, square, checks and venmo.
Good financial routines include more than bill paying. It includes setting aside and paying taxes at the set dates, reviewing budget and expenses, and looking at your best return on investment is for marketing. Calendar the dues dates of taxes to be sure you pay timely. Review your budget and expenses monthly with a monthly money date. Your marketing budget is one of your most important expenses. Know where you are getting your clients from in order to budget accordingly. Each of these dates gives you a heads up on your success and also details to know what to keep doing and what to change.
Thanking your clients
One last note about an important routine I practice. My goal is to keep my clients for the duration. We are in a lifelong journey with organizing and productivity. As such I send a thank you note at the end or at a break when we work. I also send an annual thank you for the holidays. Keeping this list updated is a final step of my routines with clients. It’s one small way to keep connected.
There are so many ways to start and maintain routines. There’s no time like now to review these. Think about the steps you have put into place, build on these and reward yourself for your successes! Your business will be all the better for this work.
More tips here on routines. Join my newsletter!