You’ve probably heard the saying “Plan for pleasure because pain will schedule itself” and this applies to business in much the same way. If you don’t plan, you’re planning to fail. The greatest idea or startup won’t make it past first base without a killer plan and someone who can articulate that plan clearly. As an entrepreneur, you understand what you want and how you want to get it but no one gets far on their own so you need to be able to share these ideas and plans with those on the journey with you.
One of the first things you need to do when planning it start with the end in mind. If you’re working your way backwards, you’re doing what I call “Pro-Active Planning” as opposed to what happens when you’re doing it as it happens and engaging in “Reactive Planning”. Don’t get me wrong, you can reactively plan and achieve relatively good results but you have no idea what the outcome will be because it’s not directed. Pro-active planning means you already know where you’re going to end up and you’re just making a clear path from finish to start.
If you have a team you work with, consider making the key members a part of the planning process. Depending on the age range of the team, you might find that this involvement in the decision making process gets you a much deeper level of buy-in and makes them feel valued. This is especially true for Gen Y team members who thrive on knowing WHY they are doing something. If you give them the why, you’ll get the results you want.
Another good tool to have in your arsenal of planning, is a decent calendar and booking system that can integrate well and be accessible from anywhere. I use Google Calendars and Calendly to control my availability, to ensure I allocate plenty of time to my clients without impacting on others and to make sure I am never double booked. These two very easy to use, cloud based tools have allowed me to take my scheduling to another level and provide my clients with the level of service they expect and deserve.
At emanation we believe in the importance of planning and this is not only ingrained into our values and business but also the basis of much of what we teach our clients and fellow entrepreneurs and business owners. We base our whole educational program on the foundation of planning and systems so that our clients reap the benefits of structured and deliverable outcomes from their efforts. Our program highlights the importance of systems and the involvement of the business owners to ensure the outcomes are realistic, measurable and above all else effective and efficient.
This article was prepared by Ant Ulijn, Social Media Extraordinaire and Values Alignment Expert from emanation. If you found this information useful, please comment below and make sure you like us on Facebook for more great content like this.