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How I dream, scheme and plan for 2017

How I dream, scheme and plan for 2017

January 05, 2017

It's the first week of the new year, and it's Goal Setting Season!

And while every blogger and his mother are talking about achieving New Year's resolutions, realize that there is a special energy of renewal that's available now. Try to ride the wave of potential and possibility that manifests at new year.

3 Types of Goal Setting for 3 Time Frames

When I speak to my clients about setting goals, I have three types of processes in mind. When planning your own goals, you can think through all 3 at one time, or do each process individually.

  1. There's the 3-Year "DreamQuest" Plan, which is all about the bigger picture. Where do you want to be in 3 years? Where do you want your business to be?
  2. There's the One Year Plan: how to synthesize your far reaching goals with what needs to be done this year. "Where you want to be" meets "what your business needs".
  3. Then there's the Quarterly Plan. Really breaking the yearly plan down into achievable, calendar-able pieces. And making it happen.

Let's start with the 3-Year DreamQuest Plan.

The following are just some of the questions we ask on the 3 Year DreamQuest Plan. The full experience is too involved to give over in a blog. Click on the link below to get a taste of what the DreamQuest is.

[CLICK HERE to get a taste of the
3 Year DreamQuest Plan Curriculum.] 

Business leaders often face forks in the road. It could be an unexpected opportunity, a difficult life circumstance, or simply an acknowledgement that you want to move on in life.

You have to decide which way to take you business. And figure out how to position your business for your new opportunities, circumstances or moves.

The DreamQuest Plan encourages you to think big. It's a place to define what you want and figure out what keeps you feeling trapped. Here's where you plan your legacy and aim to fulfill it through your next step by step actions.

Define who you are. Get real. Understand your strengths and limitations. Accept them and work with them to make your life easier and more fulfilling.

All of these questions are asked to you by someone who understands your whole being. That you are a business leader and at the end of the day - you'll need to implement real business procedures. It's not therapy. It's a hybrid of imagining possibilities and strategizing how to get there in real time.

The One Year Plan

This is similar to the 3-Year DreamQuest, but it tackles specific business needs head on. And it's targeted for the next year only.

What is the top big theme(s) of this year? Some suggestions are listed below. 

  1. Transitioning: Are you looking to make a transition to working smarter? Can you learn to work more fully in your HABUT? Step back from a task and replace yourself? Hire staff or outsource a job? 
  2. Growing and Marketing: Is there an acquisition you want to make? Perhaps a competitor is looking to retire. You can expand into another city. You can expand your services or product line. Does your marketing team need more resources? 
  3. Internal Reorganizing: Does your business need an internal overhaul? Are processes poorly defined and the staff frustrated? Is there a lot of waste in your expense column? Are you not clear what your KPIs are?
  4. Selling or Passing the Business to the Next Generation: Are you thinking of your exit strategy? What needs to happen to ensure a more seamless transition for you, your buyers and your staff? 

The One Year Plan can take the larger issues of your business, and move them into a position to be able to effectively find solutions.

For example, if this is a year of reorganizing, you can analyze which costs must be corralled and which processes must be better defined. Hire an outside analyst to review your balance sheets. Assign a team member to research best practices in your industry as a distinct project. Take the time to think through what your KPIs are and how to better define them, or get help clarifying what you and your team's KPIs should be.

Now We Bring It into Reality: Calendaring your Year, 3 Months at a Time.

Yearly goals must be broken down into bite-sized tasks in order to get the real work done. Big plans often fall by the wayside when you get back to the daily routine of running your company.

If there isn't a due date set and something else comes up, the "urgent" most often overrides the "important but not urgent".

Here are 2 suggestions to effective calendaring:

1. Start from the due date and work backwards.

Set a significant due date within each quarter of the year. It's an added incentive to finishing a project if the quarter is closing and the work must get done. In keeping with the earlier example, if you need to reassess your KPIs: 

  • Step 1- Figure out which numbers really matter in assessing the health of your business (and it's not just the P&L). And if you can't do it yourself - get an advisor or coach!
  • Step 2- Set clear job descriptions and goals with your employees. They can then understand their most important activities and their incentives.
  • Step 3- Track KPIs and implement feedback loops.
  • Step 4- Document.

These 4 steps must be itemized and assigned. Each team member's tasks should be entered into a project management schedule.

2. Get a solid project management software.

We've either used or looked into a variety of project management software over the years: Align, Asana, Trello, Hive, Droptask, etc. Different PM software will work better for your specific industry: all have pros and cons. Ask for best practices in your industry online groups. Sign up for a few free tutorials. But do yourself a favor and don't wait to find the *perfect* software. Unless you build your own, you'll never find it. Choose one and remember that you can always switch things up.

One final word about Goal Setting.

I can rattle this material off on one foot, because I take company leaders through this all of the time. I know it's overwhelming. But it's exciting to really get ahold of your business and make it work for you!

That's why we do what we do at Brand Launcher. To makeyour business easier. And to help your life be more fulfilling.

[CLICK HERE to download a taste of the
3 Year DreamQuest Plan Curriculum.]


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