Updated: Dec 11, 2020
Towards the end of the year, I tend to reflect on how the year went as business owner, but also, what can I do to prepare for the best next year. With so much outside of our control these days, let's talk about what we can control.
What can you do to create a great 2021?
I work with my clients initially to get insurance policies set up; either for themselves or for the whole family. Once we set up the coverage, we meet annually to catch up to chat, cover and questions, update addresses and so on. Most of the time, I hear the same thing that life is so busy and that they often feel unorganized.
If you think of your household as a business and that if the owner, that is a good place to start. Once you have that mindset, think about the "what ifs" in the event someone gets sick or has an unexpected catastrophe; can the team survive without you? Did you prepare them for where to find the resources necessary to keep the business afloat?
I believe it is a responsibility that we all have to prepare our loved ones for the unexpected and the way to do that, is to get disorganized.
For example, I have a policy summary that will allow for a client to log their policy's details here. If you download this and realize, that you don't know the answers to be able to complete this yourself, then you are in need of this company audit. Now is the time to get organized!
Get into the habit to do a quarterly audit. What you will be doing here is creating a Master Survival Kit for your business that you can share with those who are important to you - your spouse and other family members involved. By delegating those to the details, you can give them access so that if they need to find something, they know what to do and where to find the documents needed to work through a specific situation at hand.
Here’s how to do it:
Start a general folder on your drive or cloud that will be the master folder
Create subfolders for each category and decide who needs access to which folder
Share the folders with those and let them know why they have access
Prepare an emergency contact list and an item list, that is shared between the users
Start scanning and logging instructions on a master spreadsheet or on the same master item list
This general folder is going to resemble the top of an organizational chart for a company. This is the master category and may just be your family's name.
These subfolders can be thought of as projects. You may have to take certain weekends to spend some time without any other personal obligations to sort through your personal documents and allow yourself some time to focus and think about this process. Then you should figure out, which project is the priority for the time you have available that day and complete your task. Just like we do the scramble around tax time, you focus and get your documents logged and submitted for your tax return so think of this the same way. Gather all policies, important documents, receipts and start with the paperless project of the week/end or month. It may be painful but worth it in the long run!
You can give your emergency contacts access by sharing specific folders with them. While managing your projects, be sure to keep your confidential documents out of these subfolders. Similar to having an employee, be mindful of who will get access to what.
Before cell phones, we had landlines and post-its, address books and/or a list on the fridge of who to contact. A lot has changed since then thankfully but if something happened to you, would your spouse, kid or parent know who to contact for your disability claim or worse? So many spouses reported to me that they don't know where certain documents are located. These folders and contact list will solve this problem.
Get to work! This won't be fun initially and many of you will put this off. I promise, once you get rolling and scanning and logging, this will feel good and you can feel good about the fact that you are transferring stress away from a potential future situation and making tasks easier for yourself and those around you, by getting organized.
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