How can you do an end-of-year business review as a freelancer or solo entrepreneur? What exactly are you supposed to INCLUDE in your end-of-year business review? Let’s dive in...
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The purpose of doing an end-of-year business review is to assess what you have — and have NOT — accomplished in the past year, so you can best prepare for the upcoming year. Think of your annual business review as an opportunity to do future forecasting for your business!
There are 7 core questions you can ask yourself for your solopreneur end-of-year business review…
- What goals did I set for this year? (What did I intend to do, and where was I hoping to be by this point?)
- Based on those goals, what did happen — and what did not happen?
- What did I actually accomplish this year? What am I proud of myself for accomplishing? (Create a full list of ALL of your accomplishments here! E.g. Include the number of networking events you’ve attended, your confidence increasing, how you’ve created project proposal templates, certifications, etc)
- Why did I accomplish this goal vs that? (Put into context)
- What is the BEST thing(s) I did this past year for my business, and what is the WORST thing(s) I did this past year for my business?"
- You can think about this in terms of the actions you took, tangible results from those actions, your satisfaction and fulfillment with your business, your definition of success, any perspective shifts or internal beliefs or mindset blocks, etc. This will help with decision-making as you start planning ahead for the new year.
- You could even map this out visually, e.g. create a spectrum or a ruler and place specific events/actions/experiences etc on it
- Based on what I’ve done and learned this year, how can I use this information for the upcoming year? What do I want to change or do the same in 2024? (e.g. How useful was this activity vs that one?)
- If you knew that your ideal business was going to be your reality by this time next year, what would you do differently moving forward?
- Think about how you would spend your time, what you might change with tasks/systems/processes, where your thoughts would be at, etc. Does that affect what decisions you want to make?
- You don't necessarily need to act fully on this, but you might find you want to make a few changes to your goals/plans as a result!
An important thing to consider here when you are doing your end-of-year business review is to make sure you set aside enough time for it. If you’re doing a full business retreat — which I do recommend doing as a solo business owner — then you’ll want to map out your entire schedule in advance and give yourself enough time to collect all the data to analyze, as well as reflection time and thinking time, prior to setting your goals and strategic action plans and timelines for the new year.
This is just the tip of the iceberg! You can get a full list of ALL the guided questions I recommend including as part of your annual business review — PLUS sample schedules, a full business retreat checklist, and more — in my Business Planning Retreat Intensive: