Top 10 Items to Review & Build Your Business Now!


In building and runnng an independent private practice or small business, there are many items that need to be monitored closely and should be reviewed periodically. Year-end is a traditional time do this, and this week's Letter is a "Top Ten" of items to review as the year draws to a close, or whenever you decide to pause, reflect, take stock and re-assess.

1. Review your client statistics: How many clients did you have? On average, how long did they stay? How did they describe their problem? What did they need or want from you? Does tracking by gender, age, or other criteria, provide insight about your business?

2. Review your referral sources: How do clients find you? Do you have a solid mix of referral sources? Too few sources makes your business dependent on them, while too many sources is inefficient. Who refers the most desirable clients? Who refers the least desirable?

3. Review your outcome statistics: How many clients had successful outcomes? How many had unsuccessful outcomes, and why? How many left before you thought they should, and why? Which clients are you most effective with? Which do you enjoy the most?

4. Review your income, month by month: Look for patterns or relationships with marketing efforts or community events that may impact your business. Does your business go up when school starts or after holidays? Can you capitalize on any of these cyclical patterns?

5. Review environmental changes: Has the community's awareness of your skills or services been impacted by someone else's marketing, by news stories or controversy this year? Has your neighborhood changed? Have circumstances made your office more or less visible? Are other professionals moving into, or out of, your neighborhood?

6. Review office policies and procedures: Do any of your forms, brochures, or signs need to be up-dated? Is it time to add color and graphics? Can office procedures be streamlined, computerized or contracted out for better productivity?

7. Review your insurance coverage, lease agreements, partnerships and other documents that impact your business. Is this the year to incorporate? Consult a professional about making appropriate changes, and meet with your accountant for a year-end review and tax planning.

8. Review every aspect of your professional status: Review your CE requirements, renew your license(s), pay dues to your professional organizations, and be sure your liability insurance coverage is adequate and current.

9. Identify and study the 3 biggest mistakes you made relative to finances, business and marketing this year. What did you do, or not do? What did you learn? What steps can you take so that particular mistake or set of circumstances never holds you back again?

10. Be sure to acknowledge and thank everyone who has contributed to your success this year, including referral sources, advisors, colleagues, and especially your clients. Send holiday greetings, thank you notes, and where it's appropriate, send a gift or token of appreciation.

Have a great week! The holidays can be a time of stress - please accept our best wishes that this year it be a time for peace, joy, and goodwill toward all!

Copyright 2003 by Philip E. Humbert. All Rights Reserved. This article may be copied and used in your own newsletter or on your website as long as you include the following information: "Written by Dr. Philip E. Humbert, writer, speaker and success coach. Dr. Humbert has over 300 free articles, tools and resources for your success, including a great newsletter! It's all on his website at: www.philiphumbert.com">http://www.philiphumbert.com


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Rolling updates as Labour’s deputy leader says he sometimes does not recognise his own party after seven MPs quit party

Some of you who tuned in for this morning’s press conference – in which seven Labour MPs announced they would quit the party – might have heard a surprising commentary. “Between this and Brexit we are actually fucked,” an unknown male voice could be heard saying as the even was broadcast live across the BBC Two and BBC News channels. “It’s going to be so divided … The Conservatives are going to win.”

A BBC spokesperson said: “Due to an error, we inadvertently broadcast some background comments from another microphone during our coverage of the press conference this morning. We apologised on air once we realised our mistake.”

Related: BBC apologises for hot mic swearing during Labour split broadcast

This is interesting from Guardian media editor Jim Waterson –

If you want an example of UK electoral law loopholes: The Independent Group, which looks/swims/quacks a lot like a political party and is asking for donations, is actually a private company. So it isn't subject to electoral law rules requiring them to declare financial backers.

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Israeli foreign minister accuses Poles of hatred towards Jews in remarks described as ‘racist’ by Polish PM

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Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer reprises role as cleaning lady during festivities in home state of Saarland

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Elin Ersson received a £250 fine for refusing to take her seat on a plane in Sweden last year

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European People’s party and Socialists & Democrats have run parliament for 40 years

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Donald Trump returned to the attack against Andrew McCabe on Monday, in response to an interview in which the former deputy FBI director discussed his new book and made claims damaging to the president.

Related: 'I believe Putin': Trump dismissed US advice on North Korea threat, says McCabe

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Damian Collins warns of ‘deepfake films’ showing doctored footage of politicians

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Two former military pilots, a customs officer and celebrity bodyguard among the accused

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Hans Leo Maes captures the bridges and stairways that link up the hilly, population-dense city

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Romania’s capital has a buzzing nightlife with plenty of options for a romantic night out – unless you’re LGBT

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There’s a whole new craze in east Africa, fuelled by secondhand inline skates – and a desire to unite

Photos and story by Duncan Moore

Nairobi’s traffic congestion is notorious. Minibuses known as matatus battle for space with cars, motorbikes and hand-drawn carts, causing excruciating gridlock.

Through this automotive battleground dart the daring members of the Kenyan city’s inline skating community, deftly weaving between moving vehicles, holding on to buses for speed and jumping over potholes.

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Idea of topping municipal plant in Copenhagen with urban ski resort won accolades for Danish architecture firm

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Russian agent allegedly in Bulgaria when Emilian Gebrev poisoned in 2015 and in UK when Skripals attacked

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Related: Skripal poisoning: UK team looks into possible Bulgarian case link

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Police submit evidence over online video of cardboard model being burned

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Communities clash over natural resources as arrivals from South Sudan and DRC plunder environment for fuel and construction

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Mike Pezzullo admits department faced ‘urgent’ circumstances when deal done with little known firm Paladin

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Analysis of community where 73% of residents contracted Zika in 2015 offers new clues about epidemic

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Cardinals around the world are joining the pope at a forum on tackling abuse. But only radical reform can solve the crisis

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From Russia to Turkey and Iraq, the rout of the caliphate brings new political considerations and shifting alliances

The collapse of the Isis caliphate’s last stronghold in Syria is sending shockwaves across the region, changing the calculations of the major powers as they jockey for advantage. Triumphalism in Washington, Moscow and Damascus risks obscuring the human cost of a “victory” that may quickly prove transitory.

Of immediate concern is the fate of civilians, mainly women and children, displaced from formerly Isis-controlled areas where many were held against their will. The independent International Rescue Committee says up to 4,000 people are fleeing towards the al-Hawl refugee camp in north-east Syria.

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US president’s latest ploy is the product of an immature, egotistic mind, and is based on a lie

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Donald Trump’s national emergency, over his thwarted plans to build a border wall with Mexico, is prompted by none of these horrors. According to him, the safety and wellbeing of the world’s richest, most powerful country is threatened with utter destruction by penniless Guatemalans.

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Four years ago, 24-year-old Hoda Muthana left her family in the US to travel to Syria and join Islamic State. Now, after being captured by Kurdish forces, she is pleading to return home to Alabama


* Hear the Guardian's Middle East correspondent, Martin Chulov, speak to Hoda Muthana about her life with Isis and eventual escape on tomorrow's Today in Focus 


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Radziwill, the younger sister of Jackie Kennedy, has died at the age of 85. Married three times, she was a well-known socialite and a successful interior designer

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The US vice-president rebuked European powers over Iran and Venezuela on Saturday, in a renewed attack on traditional US allies, rejecting a call by Germany’s chancellor to include Russia in global cooperation efforts. Describing the results of Donald Trump’s presidency as 'remarkable' and 'extraordinary', Pence told senior European and Asian officials that the European Union should follow the US in quitting the Iran nuclear deal and recognising the head of Venezuela’s congress, Juan Guaidó, as president

Pence hails 'remarkable, extraordinary' Trump tenure in attack on US allies

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A man opened fire on Friday in a warehouse in Aurora, Illinois, an hour's drive west of Chicago. The shooter, identified as 45-year-old Gary Martin, was an employee at the industrial complex in Aurora. He also wounded five police officers before he was shot dead 


• Aurora shooting: sacked employee kills five in Illinois warehouse

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Donald Trump has declared a national emergency to secure extra funding for his wall at the US-Mexico border. Trump’s decision came after weeks of wrangling over his campaign promise, which led to a record 35-day partial government shutdown, damaging his approval rating. 

• Trump declares national emergency to build US-Mexico border wall

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Residents of a coalmining region in Siberia have been posting online videos showing entire streets and districts covered in toxic black snow that critics say highlight a man-made ecological catastrophe in which British industry is compliant.

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