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5 Questions to Prepare Your Biz for Next Year

Hi all, Jess here! I just wanted to take a moment to introduce you all to another of our new writers – the fabulous Eleanor Mayrhofer. Eleanor is ‘e.m.’ behind e.m.papers, a printable stationery business, and she also runs a blog called Steal This Process, where she shares the expertise she’s gained from more than 15 years of experience in project management. She has guest posted here before, and I loved her style so much I asked her to join us in the new year. Thankfully for you and me she said yes! Now it’s over to Eleanor…


I know, I know. Now is not the best time to suggest you start thinking about next year.

We are entering the busiest time of the year for makers and small businesses; the holiday frenzy.

But between all the order taking, order making, packing and shipping, it’s important to not waste the time after the holiday rush to set yourself up for success in the coming year.

Don’t get me wrong. I think taking some time off after the holidays to enjoy life, family and friends is a non-negotiable for living a well-rounded life, and frankly, for the health of your business.

So if now, in the middle of all the craziness you take a teeny amount of time to do some light weight reviewing and goal setting, come January you’ll be able to do the heavier lifting of deep thinking and planning about the future of your business after you’ve had some time to recoup.

Here are some things to just think about – even the middle of an extremely busy and hectic time – to make this process easier to boot up after you’re recharged and ready to tackle a new year.

Try to jot answers to these questions down as answers come to you. Nothing fancy, just use a notebook, Evernote file, or whatever tool you use regularly and feel most comfortable with.

Feel free to share answers in the comments too!

Eleanor Mayrhofer

Eleanor Mayrhofer has written 6 posts in this blog.

Eleanor Mayrhofer is the 'e.m.' behind e.m.papers, a printable stationery business. Before striking out on her own she worked for over 15 years at digital agencies as a designer, user experience practitioner, project manager and process methodology expert. She shares how to apply the expertise she gained in project management and methodology to running an indie business at Steal This Process.


Allison Dey

These questions have been going around in my head for about 2 months as the Christmas season loomed ahead. And I am so glad to see them neatly written out, thank you! I already wrote this year off as I changed direction somewhat too late to take advantage, but by letting go of one way, I found the truer direction of my business. So I’m working on getting one aspect fully functional (toy and doll patterns) and will get back to making the dolls I love when that’s solid. In the meantime, I have also added teaching dollmaking. It’s my three-legged business! But even if not in time for a big bang this year, I now have the proper direction to plan for next.

Eleanor Mayrhofer

Hi Allison, glad it helped! I find it helps to pause and take stock of all that’s gone on. I have a reflex to just keep charging towards the future, but looking back helps inform said ‘charging’ 🙂 Good luck on your teaching!

What say you?