Biz planning is on everyone’s mind right now; new year, new goals, new plans and new visions.  It is an exciting time of year, but also one that can get overwhelming very quickly. It does not have to be that way!  

When we talk about biz planning, most people go straight into goal setting. While goal setting is important, it is not the only component of biz planning. I want to give you a few key pointers to direct your planning in an effective way to set you up for a successful year.  

Biz Planning Step #1:  Make personal time off/vacation time a priority:  GET THIS ON YOUR CALENDAR! If you don’t put dates on your calendar, before you know it, the year will pass you by in a whirlwind.  Part of being an entrepreneur, and one of the most common reasons WHY you are an entrepreneur, is for more time freedom, but you still have to schedule your time off!  Get some vacations, personal days and downtime on your calendar.

For me, I personally try to take Fridays as a personal day every week.  I may work until noon, but beyond that, I use Fridays for personal appointments.  When I keep it consistent, my clients can plan around it. I start the year by getting my non-negotiables on the calendar. Why is this so important? Well, it’s simple. If it’s on the calendar, it gets done.  The last thing you want to do is put together a huge program or product launch, do all the work surrounding it, then realize launch day is the first day of your family vacation that you completely forgot about. Who would really do that, you ask? Guilty. Quite honestly, I did this myself just this year.  I planned a program launch for January 7th and guess who will be out of town visiting family until the 8th? Yup.  Could I get it launched and started on the 7th?  Yeah, sure, but why do that when I should be spending time with my family?  

Biz Planning Step #2:  Evaluate what worked and what didn’t work:  Take some time to really reflect on what you did in the previous year. What helped? What did not? Which products or programs were most successful? Should they be adjusted at all? Also, take a look at which ideas turned out to be a total flop. Why was it a flop? Does it need to be revamped or should it come off the table completely in the new year?  Don’t be afraid to ask your clients for feedback!

Why is this important?  If you don’t know what worked and what didn’t work, it’s hard to plan for the new year and set realistic and attainable goals. You have to evaluate each attempt and identify not just if it worked, but why it worked. Was it because the price was right, value high, results amazing, or all of the above?  You need to know why it was a best seller so you can decide if you want to continue to market it the same for the next year or if it should be adjusted. Maybe that product could withstand a price increase, possibly become an evergreen program or product, or be utilized for passive income…All of these are key factors when planning.   

Biz Planning Step #3:  Know your Point A and Point B:  What I mean by this is know where you are starting the new year and where you would like to see it end.  Are you starting at five 1:1 clients and you want to increase that to 10? Always use the “From XX to XX by When” method when setting goals and begin with an action word.  For example, Increase revenue from 60K to 100K annually by June 30th. Or, increase client base by 40% by Dec 31. You get the point. Be clear and specific. You do not want your goals to lack clarity.  

Why is this important?  If you aren’t clear on where you are starting and where you are trying to get, it is near impossible to put steps in place to accomplish the goal.  Think about it this way; when you get in your car to go somewhere, you put in your starting point and your destination point so the GPS can give you the corresponding steps to get you from one place to the next.  Without either of those two components, the GPS would have no idea where to send you. The same holds true in your biz planning! You must be clear on exactly where you are starting and where you want to go.

So there you have it; my top 3 biz planning steps for the new year.  This is an exciting time for business owners. It is an opportunity to grow and expand on what you have been working on previously.  I really suggest taking a full day or more to do your biz planning for the new year without interruptions. Tell family and friends that this day is on your calendar and spend the day uninterrupted, really taking the time to think about what you want your new year to look like.  Set yourself up in the corner of your favorite coffee shop, rent a room on airbnb or simply stay home in your office with the door closed and get your biz planning track laid out for a successful new year.

If you are looking for additional help, the 3 week Biz Planning Intensive will break down your strategy from a yearly overview, quarterly breakdown and delegation, then into your monthly and weekly action plan.  The intensive program is a guided program with live Q&A’s, worksheet evaluation, group strategy calls and more!