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Notable improvement, growth and business success need direction and a sense of purpose. They won’t happen on their own! Here are some steps to planning success.

“If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail”

Benjamin Franklin

Step One

Determine what you wish to accomplish – start with the end goal in mind and reverse engineer how you plan get there. Here are some ideas – do you want to simply increase sales by a percentage or dollar figure? Will you make a more strategic change and move into a new product line or even expand on your current service offering? Or simply move into a different market or focus on a different geography. Don’t forget to not only include your business goals but also plan for your personal goals as well. Remember health and wellbeing are just as important.

Step Two

Determine how will these be funded? From internal cash reserves or an external debt source?

Step Three

What skills and additional support do you need to make this business success happen? If you don’t have the skills will you acquire these yourself or build a team around you?

Surround yourself with quality people – who are your trusted advisors? Conduct an audit on this and share your plan with them for their feedback and input.

Step Four

Review and Revise!

Once you’ve completed the plan don’t leave it in the drawer until next year when you decide to look back at the year that was and realise you never managed to achieve any of your goals the plan set out. Keep it up to date as “live“ document. Build in milestones and date markers to stay on track. Keep it up to date and relevant – if there’s something you’ve planned and it’s not working be prepared to make necessary changes. Learn from your failures.