Start 2024 Organized: A Checklist for Small Business Owners

November 7, 2023

As a small business owner, the new year can offer many opportunities for building your brand and growing your company. Of course, that’s easier said than done.

That’s why entering 2024 with a refreshed mindset and key goals is important. This article provides a convenient checklist to help you prepare for the new year and stay organized as you move toward your business and professional goals.

2024 Brings Business Opportunity

Recent years have impacted how companies across the globe do business. While this period hasn’t been without challenges, the changes many businesses saw in 2023 may have been a blessing in disguise.

We’re now operating in a digital world where work can be done remotely anytime. Virtual platforms allow businesses, employees, and clients in different time zones to feel connected despite the distance — all without skipping a beat.

2024 will likely bring unexpected and unforeseen opportunities for small business owners. This means it’s important to be prepared in the new year.

A 2024 Checklist for Small Business Owners

If you’re wondering how to get ready to do business in 2024, here are some tasks to consider completing before the new year.

Do a Thorough Cleaning

Keeping your workspace clean is important. After all, a clear, fresh space can mean a clear, fresh mind.

First, try to straighten up your space. Clear your clutter, throw out or recycle any paperwork or items you don’t need, and place them in their respective trash or recycling bins.

Once this is done, consider cleaning and disinfecting your workspace. Stock up on cleaning supplies like paper towels, all-purpose cleaners, and other items like dusters, sponges, vacuums, and mops. Getting your space clean can help ease your and your employees’ minds.

However, don’t just clean your space at the start of 2024 and forget about it. Set up a regular cleaning schedule — possibly with daily, weekly, and monthly tasks — and help keep everyone, including yourself, in the right frame of mind.

Prepare Tax Documents Early

No matter the size of your business, doing your taxes each year can be overwhelming. You can jump-start your annual tax preparation and help reduce stress while maximizing your business tax deductions.

Gather the appropriate tax documents available. Ideally, you’ll stay on top of this paperwork throughout the year and have it available for each quarter completed. You can compare the last three quarters of the year to how your business did in 2023 and use this data to project what your company might owe in taxes.

An easy way to organize these important documents is by using tax preparation software.

Update Your Storage Options

Another way to streamline and keep your workspace organized is by improving your company’s storage system. Finding new storage solutions for your business can help you start 2024 on the right foot.

Evaluate your inventory and supplies to determine what you need to store your stuff and make your workplace as efficient as possible. Maybe you need some new file boxes to reorganize documents not needed in the new year. Or maybe you need bins or plastic containers to organize and access your business inventory.

Stay Stocked Up on Essentials

Think about the office supplies you and your employees need throughout the year — including ink and toner, pens and pencils, and paper (whether it’s legal-size paper, letter-size paper, printer paper, or something else) — and consider stocking up now.

And don’t forget other items you might use regularly, such as cleaning supplies or breakroom essentials like coffee, snacks, plates, and utensils.

Once you order these items, monitor how quickly your stock is depleted. Order them regularly throughout the year to avoid running out of necessary supplies. 

Update Your Business or Workspace Layout

Your office or workspace layout should reflect your company’s and employees’ needs and may create an atmosphere that encourages productivity. The beginning of the year is a good time to assess the flow of your space and consider whether it serves your current business needs.

A lot can happen during a year. What previously worked well for you might need to be more in touch with your company’s current operations.

As you contemplate potentially purchasing new office furniture, such as desks (both home office desks and those more appropriate for a shared office), office chairs, and file cabinets, ask yourself several questions.

Did your business grow in 2023, and do you anticipate making new hires in 2024? In that case, it’s good to plan. Are you relying more on remote work? Consider providing a stipend that makes it easy for your workers to get the right furniture for their space and access the technology they need for virtual meetings and collaborations.

One thing you can do is survey your employees and ask what they’d like. This is important because you want your workers to feel comfortable whether at home or in the office, which can help facilitate productivity.

Update Your Technology

Businesses are relying on technology to do the job, now more than ever. And that’s a trend that won’t be changing in 2024.

If you want to stay competitive in your field, the new year is a great time to consider upgrading your company’s technology. The latest tech can help give your business a competitive edge in a changing world. Assess everything from laptops and desktop computers to software, printers, and any other technology you need to run a successful business.

Get New Calendars

A key to staying organized as a business is marking key deadlines, targets, and events on calendars and planners. While many people keep track of these things virtually, physical calendars and daily planners still have an important role. They’re a great space to write notes and appointments, set daily, weekly, and monthly goals, and write to-do lists.

The start of any new year is an obvious time to buy desk calendars, dry-erase calendars, and planners like the Blue Sky planner for your business. Start 2024 with a fresh outlook.

Take a Vacation

Small business owners tend to be driven and ambitious people. While they’re focused on pushing their brand to succeed — often working long hours — they may not always focus on their work-life balance.

It’s important to take time off to refresh your mind and gain a new perspective on running your company. The start of the new year can be a good time to plan a vacation. If you do it far enough in advance, you can fully prepare for it ahead of time and know that you have nothing to worry about while you’re away.

Make the Most of 2024

As you prepare to take on 2024 and make it a productive year, assess your company’s goals and look for areas where you can streamline operations and your workspace. Sometimes, all it takes is upgrading your office supplies and space to get a fresh perspective on your brand’s mission and purpose.

About the Author

Tiffany Razzano is a journalist and freelance writer living in St. Petersburg, Florida, covering the Sarasota and Bradenton areas. She also runs a literary arts organization that supports Florida writers.

All content provided herein is for educational purposes only. It is provided “as is,” and neither the author nor Office Depot warrants the accuracy of the information provided, nor do they assume any responsibility for errors, omissions, or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein.