Brighter business / The best New Year’s resolutions for growing businesses

The best New Year’s resolutions for growing businesses

29th January 2020

The dawn of a new year is one of those natural milestones in the calendar when it makes sense to reflect on the year past and the twelve months ahead.

While everyone else is making new year’s resolutions (and breaking them by the 19th of January, according to Strava), it’s a good time to commit to a few best-practices of your own.

We’ve got some ideas below on what businesses should be focused on this year

Stay on top of sustainability

Sustainability was the talking point of 2019. A dramatic increase in public awareness around climate change saw demonstrators and consumers demanding action from governments and businesses to do more to reduce their environmental impact.

It’s important to continue building on last year’s momentum, introducing measures to ensure a more sustainable future for everyone.

Encourage employees to take public transport to work, or offer a Cycle to Work scheme, which can save you money through reduced National Insurance Contributions.

If you work from an office, changes of habit can be encouraged. Double-sided printing can reduce paper waste - at Opus Energy, we saved more than 80,000 sheets of paper by encouraging reductions in printing. Switching to LED lighting can reduce your energy consumption, and your bills.

Other businesses may be interested in generating their own renewable electricity and selling it back to the grid through an energy supplier. Even easier than that is choosing a supplier that can guarantee renewable electricity, so your energy comes from carbon-free sources

There are plenty of things that you can do to make a positive change. Whether your commitment is to phase-out single-use plastics or choose a 100% renewable electricity supply, know that you’re doing your bit for the planet.

Get prepared for Brexit

Brexit has been a slow-burning political and economic issue for years, and it will come to the fore this year.

January 31st sees the UK’s official exit from the EU. It’s worth remembering that the UK won’t waltz off a cliff face at midnight on the 31st; there’s a transition period in place until the end of 2020 to help businesses and citizens adjust to the new arrangements.

For businesses that move goods in and out of the UK to other European destinations, it’s important to ensure that you have an EORI number.

Having an EORI (Economic Operators Registration and Identification) number should ensure you faces no additional charges or delays when moving goods between the UK and the EU.

Business advice around Brexit has been issued on the UK’s government website across a range of topics, including imports and exports, employment contracts and working hours, and eligibility to live and work in the UK. Find this information here.

Get a smart meter

We’re in a new decade, but is your business energy management stuck in the past? If you find yourself rooting around in a cupboard to check your meter reading, or not getting the right bill every time, you could be upgrading your technology and get back to focussing on the important things.

Smart meters are helping to build the energy network of the future. By giving energy consumers more information, smart meters will encourage more flexible energy use and create room on the grid for more flexible technologies.

All suppliers have to offer smart meters at no extra cost, so this resolution is an easy one to tick off quickly. If you’re an Opus Energy customer, you can click here to register today.

Work smarter, not harder

Getting the right balance at work can be difficult. Even when there’s a regular rhythm to your job, there are times when you’re swamped with work and trying to keep on top of it all.

Sometimes, letting go of some things is the best way to focus more on the ones that matter. Learning to trust your staff and delegating work appropriately, instead of trying to control everything, can help to take some of the pressure off.

As a business owner, knowing which work to take on and what to commit to is what matters. Don’t get swamped working on the little things that suck up loads of time - focus on prioritising the work that delivers the greatest bang for buck. The Eisenhower Matrix is a handy tool used by business leaders worldwide to figure out what should be at the top of your list.