The worst advice ever for a small business might be the words: may old acquaintance be forgot. Really?  Ever hear of Facebook? We’ve pretty much made the idea of forgetting the past obsolete. In an age of tell-all memoirs, constant contact and connection, the idea of moving forward without looking back is virtually impossible. So what does that mean for small business?

3.) Don’t burn your bridges. Try to resolve conflicts and end relationships, especially with clients, amicably. Even if someone no longer needs your product or service, that doesn’t mean they can’t refer you to someone else.

2.) Don’t look back in anger.  Yes, let’s go ahead and quote the band Oasis here. Think of the past as ancient history and don’t be afraid to reconnect with old friends, colleagues and classmates because of what you think may be embarrassing foibles. It’s all water under the bridge. And, if it’s not, you’ll know soon enough.

1.) Don’t play leapfrog with a unicorn. Okay, so couldn’t think of a third thing and my husband just leaned over and told me that. Well, you know what? He’s right. Digging up the past can be fun and fortuitous. But it can also be dangerous. Stay away from suicidal ex-boyfriends, overly dramatic ex-girlfriends and old college buddies who owned hookahs, as potential business connections.  While it might be nice to reconnect with acquaintances and expand your network, some connections are not worth rekindling. 

Now, in all honesty, I have misled you.  The true meaning of Auld Lang Syne is actually not telling us to forget the past, but poses the question of whether we should forget:  Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?

And the answer:  We’ll take a cup of o‘ kindness yet, for auld lang syne. 

We’ll drink to old friends and old times past.  We will remember and toast it all.

So here’s to you, your good health and great success in 2012.

Happy New Year!