The fourth quarter is a great time to reflect on the past year and any gambles you or your business made. It’s important to take notice of anything negative and turn it around before you leap into 2019. There are several items to look at when assessing how you will enter the new year, but here are some of the top gambles we’ve seen businesses go through.


The first has to do with sales. What do you do if sales aren’t selling? More so, how long have you allowed it to go on? Your sales force can run like a well-oiled machine as long as it taken care of. If sales aren’t selling, that’s a pretty good sign that something in your sales machine broke. First of all, does sales and marketing have similar goals? Are sales driving marketing? Sales need to be able to sell, so if they are spending time scrubbing leads or cold calling instead of focusing on the current leads and future proposals nothing will ever get sold. Allow your sales team to do their job and no one else’s. Allow them to focus on the potential sales so they can close the deal and bring home the bacon.


Next, you want to take a look at your marketing efforts and see if they are working. Are you just throwing money at Google, but not receiving leads? Do you have social media, but no clue what to do with it? Why waste time and money on something that simply is not working? If you currently have an in-house marketing team, great, it’s time to align your goals and re-think your strategy. Stop throwing money at Google right now, instead take that time to create relevant and interesting content. It’s truly amazing what blogs and content alone can do to get your website seen. Don’t get all caught up in the technical aspects, just start somewhere. If you really need to step up your game, maybe it’s time to see if outsourcing your marketing is a better option for you.


How are your employees? Have you seen a lot of turnover in your business? Have you taken the time to train them just for them to leave a month or two later? It is frustrating when you take the time to hire who you think is a great candidate, then invest in training only to have to do it all over again. This is a tricky issue to combat, however, there are tools that can help weed out the excess and find the diamond in the rough. Don’t forget that employees stick around when they are utilized and respected by their employer. That’s where the DISC assessment could really benefit a business. You know much of the way that person thinks and how to engage them.


Finally, is tech utilization and efficiency. Have any clients contacted you, unhappy with how a tech handled something? Or perhaps they called a week ago for a minor fix and that ticket hasn’t even been looked at. That is the quickest way to lose a client, promise swift action and under deliver. This should be the first thing addressed in your 2019 plans. It fairly simple to keep these things from happening. The key is service coordination and the proper technology to handle multiple tickets. If you already have this in place and you are still finding issues involved in the process, you might want to consider hiring a dispatcher or allowing one of your techs to be accountable for ticket triage. Dispatch is a key component to service coordination and ensuring a client’s needs can be taken care of in a timely manner.


All of these things can become detrimental to a business. So why even take the gamble? Core items like sales, marketing and operations shouldn’t be taken for granted or neglected. The opportunity to fix these things is now. Head into the new year confident in your business and its processes.