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Does the end of the year make you stressed? Are you unable to jump-start the year running due to a lack of knowledge of business finances?

When you think of the end the of the year, do you think of family, Christmas, gifts, snow, and food? Or do you tend to think of the extra shifts, endless paperwork, and those double shot espresso at three in the morning?

If you lean more towards the extra coffee and not being able to hit snooze then this post is for you. I want to share 5 tips that can help you close the business year successfully and revamp for the upcoming year.

1. Wrap up your books:

Are you working with an accountant? Get them your financials ahead of time so that your books can be closed on time. If you are not currently working with an accountant or bookkeeper, there are plenty of apps out there that can help in achieving this goal.

Quickbooks for example has its own Expense Tracker, check it out.

You will not be able to make any financial decisions or do any tax planning for the upcoming year if you don’t know how much money your business has received or expensed for that year. By staying up to date with your books, you can have peace of mind come tax season; and you’ll be in a better position to make future business decisions.

2. Revisit your business pricing:

Do you feel undervalued by your clients? Do you feel you work hard all year long but yet your finances don’t match up? Are you ready to raise the bar for your business? Most small businesses make the mistake of undercharging their clients. When you understand where your annual finances stand you are able to make a clear decision on how your business’s pricing compares to your competitors, as well as the quality of the service or product you are providing. Ask yourself, does the time spent with clients compensate for your time, effort, experience, and expenses? If not, the beginning of the year is a natural time to raise business prices.

3. Manage holiday bonuses and end-of-the-year employee reviews:

Starkman said it best, “Bonuses should be tied to performance and bonuses shouldn’t be given without a review” Bonuses are a great way to help boost the confidence of your employees within the company. However, there should be a differentiation between employees’ bonuses based on prior year performance and funds available. It should traditionally be added to the last paycheck of the year.

4. Catch up with your customers:

Your biggest fans are your customers/clients that remain loyal to you year after year. That’s why it is best practice to touch base with all your clients before the year closes. At this time you are able to catch up on their comments and concerns, if any, update client information, and make sure they are prepared for the upcoming year as well. After all, the success of your business is in your client’s hands. Consider offering an incentive, like a free coffee or donuts, to get those reoccurring clients to come pop into your business for a quick meeting.

5. Everyone deserves to relax:

It might seem impossible to relax especially at the end of the year with the holidays. However, you’re a business owner and should cut yourself some slack; after all, you don’t work 24/7. According to the smallbiztrends, 70% of business owners don’t see a holiday or a vacation; you don’t want to fall into this statistic. Everyone deserves a break and that includes you. The best gift you can give to your clients and your business is your presence. You cannot be there 100% if you are burnt out. Bake those cookies, attend those holiday parties, and hang out with your friends and loved ones. Do whatever you need to kick back and relax, trust you’ll thank me later.