Are you a goal getter or does your business drift along? If you are the former, you may have found that in the last few years especially, things change so frequently that you simply couldn't push against the tide however if you are the latter, this might feel a little too... unsubstantial. With the economy less certain than any of us would like, it never hurts to do business more consciously. Strike a balance between safety and striving forwards. Put simply, having a plan, but not one that requires a huge overhaul and three years of projections. Something much simpler, less overwhelming and one that goes beyond an ideal that sits inside your head and is strong enough to give you confidence in your direction. Three months is a really nice amount of time to see change without being too drawn out.
Think of it like a "Right!" (Perhaps accompanied with a hand slap down on the table as you stand up. This time you mean it and everybody knows it.)
STEP 1. Start at the end Picture yourself in three months time. What would you like to say you have achieved. This could be something like:
I would like to have sales of £8,000 by Christmas
I would like to introduce a (semi) passive income stream into my business
I would like to have up to date financial information on xero
And if you don't know what you want, then give yourself some time out to think about "What's your why..." and journal. Write it all down free flow style without thinking, without assessing, critiquing, asking if it's possible. No ones going to judge.
STEP 2. Ask yourself questions such as...
What do you need to start doing to make that happen?
What do you need to stop doing to make that happen?
What will the individual steps be along the way?
Why is it important? Does having something enable something else to happen?
e.g. If I have £10,000 monthly online sales I will be able to unlock revenue based lending which will springboard my business because I can invest in more marketing
e.g. If I have up to date financial information I will stop stressing that I don't know where I am and I will make better decisions, worry less about the recession and be calmer at home
e.g. If I have £5,000 sales, then I can take home £3,000 and that's more than enough to cover unexpected cost hikes.
STEP 3. Make sure the above are SMART... A reminder...
MEASURABLE - how will you you know when you've done it?
ACHIEVABLE - Are they realistic?
RELEVANT - This one is really important. Especially for people who might have "shiny object syndrome". Is this target truly in line with where you want to be or are you just creating a distraction for yourself.
TIMELY - can you do what you want to do in that timeframe? Or would it be worth breaking the goal into smaller chunks.
STEP 4. Block out time in your diary to check in with yourself and track how you're doing. Slower than you'd hope? Don't fall off the wagon entirely. Get back on and go again.
STEP 5. Celebrate the small wins along the way. Don't underestimate the power of doing this! It's what keeps up going and feeling like we are truly making progress. Celebrating doesn't mean splashing out on a bottle of Moet. It could be an hour out to read, take a walk or even just acknowledging it out loud... "Well done Me!"
And finally, remember! Done is better than perfect!