Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Plan Your Way to Success - Business Planning for 2010

Whew.  2009 is just a memory.  For many people, this is a relief!  But really, what makes 2010 any different?  Is there some magical, mystical reset button that is pushed every January 1st at 12:01 am?  No.

So what will make 2010 a better year than last?  There is only one real answer: YOU.

It is up to YOU to change your energy, your thoughts, your actions, and ultimately your reality.

Want success?  There's no government policy, no stimulus package, no boss, no client, and no series of magical events that will make it happen for you.  So what will YOU do to change your reality around and CREATE the successful year that lies ahead?
Business Plan ProIt all starts with a plan.  We've all heard the adage "When you fail to plan, you plan to fail."  So what stops most people from creating a written business plan?

  • Lack of focus.  Many people don't know the answers to some of the tough questions a business plan forces us to think about.  So instead of doing research, or even making an educated guess, they avoid the excercise altogether.
  • Lack of time.  A comprehensive business plan takes a significant time investment.  Many "busy" professionals consider this time investment to be unnecessary.  The thought process runs along these lines:  "If I put that same amount of time into making calls, meeting with prospects, and closing deals, I will be better off.  THAT is what puts money in my pocket, not spending time in front of a computer planning to make money."
  • Fear.  Fear of tackling a project they aren't really sure how to do successfully.
Maybe this was the thought process you carry around...or at least, you have in the past.  But I would like to put this challenge out to you:

If you did not write a business plan for 2009, and you are one of the millions of people who thought 2009 was a tough year, then I challenge you to create a business plan for 2010.

  • It's time to gain the focus.  Do some research, or at least make an educated guess on projections asked for in the planning process.
  • Make the time.  Think of this analogy:  If you wanted to drive to a specific location across country, you would map out your route to ensure you made it to your destination, correct?  You wouldn't just jump in the car, turn the wheel in the general direction, and set out, would you?  No.  Because you would risk spending countless unnecessary hours driving in the wrong direction, with the probability that you wouldn't EVER arrive where you wanted to.  So it is with business planning.  A time investment now will give you a roadmap on your journey to success, giving you a much higher chance of actually reaching the destination.
  • No more fear.  There are amazing resources that will literally walk you step-by-step through the process of creating your plan.  Most software will professionally format your final version, complete with charts, tables, and summaries.  
YOU and YOU ALONE have the power to change your reality in 2010 for the better.  Take the first step and begin your plan.  I started mine last week using  Business Plan Pro.  I used this software in 2008 and had a good year.  I didn't use it in 2009, and the year wasn't as good.  So in 2010, I'm getting back on track.  I'm writing my roadmap to success.  If you are too, then I'll see you on the journey!

Until Next Time,

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