Becoming the Business Person You Were Meant To Be – Part 6: Great Planning for Success

Behind every good strategy and every goal achieved, there was an action plan that brought it to life.

The strategy is not the end of the process, but the beginning of your journey toward your vision.  You have defined the vision, made it concrete with some goals that define what it will take for the vision to come to life, developed some strategies that you think will help you achieve your goals, and now you are ready for the plans.

Plans are the day to day activities that are how you will implement the strategy.  In some cases, it may be as simple as attending a meeting, or joining a group and putting it on your calendar.  In others, it may involve multiple steps in meeting with others to get feedback, breaking your strategy down into specific steps and tasks, and then making time to take those actions every day, week and month until you have built new habits, new ways of being and a new feeling about your life.

So if your goal is to bring in 10 new clients, for example, your strategy might be to increase your number of prospects in your target market.  Your plans might include joining a new group with lots of your target clients in it, attending more events where your target clients will be present, or speaking at those events.  It might include making sure you actually attend the meetings of the new group by blocking that time in your calendar, having a plan for talking to at least 5 new people at each meeting, or spending 30 minutes a week identifying events where your target will be present, or calling organizers to find speaking engagements.  When you break your strategy down into specific actions, plans for overcoming habits, time pressure and your own thoughts, you are creating a plan to implement.

Plans are at the most basic level, so if you find you planned to do something important in the morning and you just can’t get up, adjust your plan to do it at a time that feels more natural to you.  Plans are the level at which you “play” on a daily basis until you find a formula that works.  It is the most flexible, but that does not mean you don’t need to have a written plan and a commitment to work your plan.  Unless it’s written down and scheduled or made concrete for you in some other way, a plan becomes just another “nice idea” that you didn’t do anything about.  So, while your plans can be flexible and changed when they are not serving you well and moving you toward your goal, you have to take positive actions on your plan regularly.

What will your plan be for this month?  For this week?  For today?  How will you make sure you follow your plan?  When will you review your ability to follow the plan and make adjustments?