1. Get Thyself a Cash Flow Plan
You may have had the craziest event season of your life and be flush with cash now but how will things feel when the money isn’t rolling in in February?
For most event rental pros, business ebbs and flows with the seasons. Keeping an eye on what’s coming in and what will be going out in the coming months is key to solvency. Even if you’ve had a profitable year, you need to know how much cash you’ll need on-hand tomorrow in order to keep growing.
If you don’t have one yet, check out this free cash flow planning resource from SCORE to get yourself started. We also recommend that you check out this event-business-specific Cash Flow Workshop from Be Sage Consulting.
2. Thank Your Team
You aren’t in this alone. Whether you have a team of 25 or you’re a one-woman-show, you’re sure to have received a lot of support this year. During the last quarter of 2021 find ways to thank the people who helped you through this year. A little gratitude can go a long way.
3. Take a Hard Look at Your Collection
Every rental collection goes through cycles. But after #WeddingBoom2021, your pieces are probably ready for a rest.
Dedicate a day (of more) to inspecting your collection. Be sure to take a look at every piece you own (this may require a team or an army!). Look for wear, tear, rips, wobbly legs, and pieces that have just seen better days. Have a plan in place to retire, repair, or replace anything that isn’t in tip-top shape.
4. Schedule a Year-In-Review Retreat
Find a day, two days, or even a half-day in December that you can dedicate to reflecting on your business in 2021. Put it on your calendar now. In permanent marker. Book a conference room, a hotel suite, or AirBnB so you have a little skin in the game and won’t cancel on yourself.
Use this agenda (or something similar):
- Celebrate your wins for the year. Did you make progress on a goal? What are you proud of? Is there something (or things) you want to be sure to repeat in the future? What good did you experience in your business this year?
- Check in with yourself. How are you doing? Are you weary? Amped? Burnt out? Enthusiastic? What are you listening to? What are you noticing about yourself and the world around you in this season? Just naming it (without having to fix or change anything) can be a powerful tool.
- Consider any challenges or opportunities you had this past year. What would you like to do differently if you encounter that situation again? What tools or resources do you need in order to tackle them? Is there anything you can do now or in the future to prevent a similar situation from happening or prepare so you’re ready when it does?
- Record your epiphanies and action steps. You don’t need a list as long as your arm. But taking this time to reflect on 2021 will only set you up for success in 2022.
5. Raise Your Prices
You should raise prices in your event rental business by 5-10% per year. But that doesn’t mean that you’ll increase everything by the same amount. Be strategic when you increase rates for your rental collection, delivery fees, and even damage deposits. Use this time as an opportunity to drive sales with existing clients and those who may be on the fence.
6. Consider One Q1 2022 Metric to Focus On
There are a million bright shiny objects to look at when you’re an entrepreneur. And after the year+ we’ve had, you’ve probably got more on your mind now than ever. In order to reduce decision fatigue, keep your whole team moving towards the same goal, and give yourself a sense of purpose, choose one metric that you want to improve in the first quarter of 2022.
You might choose Email Subscribers, Payroll Cost, Delivery Revenue as a Percentage of Rental Revenue, Average Order Amount, or Conversion Rate (check out our post about the essential reports you need to track in your event rental business if you need more ideas).
For instance, if you choose email subscribers as the focus metric, as you make decisions about marketing for the quarter, you can ask yourself, “will this help me get more email subscribers?” When you’re evaluating the success of a campaign, you can again look to whether or not it increased your number of email subscribers. As you consider how to spend your time and effort, you can link each strategic decision in your business back to that one metric.
Instead of pressure to grow everything all at once, you can focus on one metric and see if the levers you’re pushing are actually changing your results. If not, you can switch things up. When you’re focused on one metric, you aren’t left to guess how X,Y, and Z impact every aspect of your business. Instead, you can just keep your eye on the ball.
We are incredibly honored to be part of such an amazing event rental community worldwide. You continue to astonish us with the beauty and innovation that you create, despite the challenges of 2020 and 2021.
We are rooting for you as you pursue your 2022 goals. We can’t wait to be blown away as you create more beauty on your rental adventures!