A new year brings out the question, what principles would you like to apply to your small business? Sure you have your business plan for 2015, but what is going to create that extra spark for your team? Follow these five tips to jump-start your business and employees for a successful and enjoyable year.

1.      Be The Motivator– As opposed to telling a member of your team that their idea didn’t work, try to shift your communication style by saying ‘Let’s try something new.’ Applying a positive spin is an excellent way to start off a new year. Positive attitudes motivate people. You are there to lead and motivate. Do this by cheering your team on!

2.      Take A Deep Breath – How many times have you seen someone make a handful of resolutions and expect to take care of them all in a month? As the saying goes, Rome was not built in a day. Take a deep breath, really think about the select few things you want to take care of and focus. You will get more done focusing on fewer goals than trying to take care of everything at once.

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3.      Listen –Use 2015 to really listen to your team. Sometimes the best action is no action, and listening will yield greater results as opposed to speaking. You may be surprised by what you hear. Take the time to listen and your team will appreciate you. It's a new year and perhaps a new you.

4.      Try Other People’s Ideas – Again, you’ve made your yearly plan. But what about the limitations of your perspective? Perhaps someone on your team has a great idea. Now that you are listening to them, why not take their ideas into account, give them the ball and roll with it? This is a great way to build trust amongst your team and a way to encourage people to think independently and take on new responsibilities.

5.      Have Fun! – Apps have made the banal aspect of life fun, like exercise and taxes. Let’s make work fun in 2015. With these tips you should have established a more clear-cut communication. You are motivating, thinking, listening, and trying new ideas. Let’s see where these things take you and try not to take yourself too seriously. You have a team, you want them to do well, and they want to do well, so work together and have fun while doing it.

This year really reach out to people and encourage them. Kick off the New Year as a mentor and motivator. They will see the new more thoughtful you and follow suit.

I would like to thank Patrick Coughlin for his help on preparing this article with me. Patrick is a Marketing Analyst at Consultants 2 Go. Don’t forget, you can email me at Peggy@Consultants2Go.com with any questions you might have and I’ll be glad to answer them. You can also follow my business and me on Twitter @peggymchale and @consultants2go.