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By Sarah Santacroce at Simplicity

January 1st 2015! A new year has started. Have you written down your good resolutions? Rather then giving you a list of things to do, I thought I’d give you a list of things that you absolutely must avoid in 2015 :-) Two of them or on my list as well, but I’m not telling you which ones…

Here are 5 Small Business Habits to Stop in 2015:

1. Stop wasting time on e-mail

What’s the first thing you do when you sit down at your desk in the morning? Check your e-mail? Stop that bad habit! If you really want to get things done in 2015, e-mail should not be your number 1 priority! Instead, every night write down your MIT (most important tasks) and when you sit down in the morning you start with those. Check your e-mail once you have accomplished 1 or 2 MIT’s and put on a timer so you don’t spend more than 30 minutes replying to e-mails. Keep your replies to 5 sentences, but make sure the message still sounds polite!

2. Stop meeting people ‘for coffee’

People love ‘meeting for coffee’ another term for ‘picking your brain’. But often these coffee meetings don’t turn into sales and leave you frustrated because you just wasted a morning without return on investment. In 2015 when people ask you to ‘meet for coffee’ find out first exactly what they want. Have they looked at your website? Have they read your blog? Do they have an idea what services you offer? If the answer is no, invite them politely to start there. If the answer is ‘yes’ suggest a first virtual meeting via Skype or Google Hangouts to save you and the prospect time. If you have a good feeling after this initial call, then it might be time for a coffee.

3. Say stop to projects, requests & invitations

Don’t feel like you have to say yes to every opportunity that comes your way. If it’s not on your list of objectives for 2015, if it doesn’t get you in front of the right audience, if it distracts you from your core business: say ‘thanks, but no thanks’. Stay laser focused on your goals.

4. Stop being a perfectionist

I’ve started out as a perfectionist as well. I had to give it up. If you want to be a creative entrepreneur, you sometimes just have to hit ‘publish’ or launch something, knowing that it’s not perfect. You will perfect it after. But if you keep delaying it, you will never get anything done in 2015.

5. Stop selling, start serving

If you’re still trying to sell your services, stop it! Instead focus on serving your target audience, adding value. This can be done by publishing content they find interesting, answering their questions, hosting a free event or webinar etc. The modern audience today doesn’t want to be sold to. But they are hungry for knowledge, but once they realize they can’t do everything themselves, they will come to you !

Author's Bio

Sarahsantracrocebiopic150Sarah Santacroce is a certified social media, internet marketing, and virtual event specialist. She enjoys every aspect of small business marketing. It is her mission to help other small businesses and solopreneurs increase their visibility and use social media tools as part of their marketing strategy.

Sarah draws on 12 years of experience in Business Administration, in fields ranging from Employee Training to Public Relations at big and small companies. She became interested in Online Marketing and Social Media to promote her own business and after lots of research and numerous classes and webinars she is now offering that knowledge to other small- to mid-sized businesses who struggle to find their place on the web.

This article is part of a series of regular contributions that Sarah will be making to her guest blog on knowitall.ch.  You can see more articles from Sarah on her own website at: www.simplicitysmallbiz.com

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