(BPT) - Summer's here so make sure to get out, enjoy the great weather and take a well-deserved break. And if you're running a small business, this summer offers a great opportunity to take a deep breath before taking action to make your business even better as you head into the second half of the year. Here are some suggestions from small business expert and author Gene Marks on how to get started:
1 - Do a productivity review. Now's the time to find those expensive inefficiencies and make some changes. Do you really need to be doing your copies in-house? Are you spending too much time shipping products? Have you devoted hours to fixing tech problems? To save time and money, look for solutions outside your company, such as shipping at your local Staples store to help your staff streamline day-to-day activities and troubleshoot issues in advance.
2 - Evaluate your employees. Mid-year is a great time to sit down with your employees, one-by-one, to discuss how things are going. Update their personnel files, medical records and personal information. This is also a great time to decide on a few goals for the remainder of the year.
3 - Clean up your office. Did you miss your spring-cleaning opportunity? No worries, you still have time. Get rid of those old files. Replace your ancient office chairs. Wipe down those windows, clean out those closets, dispose of unused supplies and vacuum, mop and sweep. You and your employees will enjoy coming to work when the office is cleaner and brighter.
4 - Revisit safety.When was the last time your fire extinguishers were replaced? Are your first-aid kits up to standards? Do you even have a first-aid kit? Do your employees know what to do in case of an emergency? Make a checklist of all the things you'll need to do to make your company as safe as it can be.
5 - Go green. You want to be more environmentally conscious, but you've always been too busy to do so. Now's your chance, because summer is a perfect time to go green. Recycle your old technology. Start an ink and toner recycling program. Purchase environmentally friendly cleaning products and make a list of green products you'll be buying going forward. Finally, make sure to tell the world what you're doing. It'll encourage others and reflect positively on your business.
6 - Upgrade your tech. Hopefully as the economy has grown your business will have grown, too, and now's the time for upgrades to your company technology needs. Work with Staples EasyTech associates to determine where investing in better technology will improve your profitability and productivity going forward.
There you have it. Summer's not only a great, warm, chilled-out time to relax and spend time with the family, it's also a great time to make some changes in your business so you can enjoy the benefits all year long.