The first half of 2013 is now in the books… what wonderful things are you going to do in the second half?
Now’s the time to take a good look at your business and think about how you plan to finish 2013. So where do you start? How about with the last six months!
One of my favorite reviews is the look back on the prior months’ activities to assess what’s going right in my business and what changes I need to make. Because I do this consistently and intentionally I am very familiar with my business and I’m able to make strategic planning decisions more comfortably.
Now please don’t get hung up on a phrase like “strategic planning.” In my world, strategic planning involves a journal, a large calendar, project planning sheets (or windows and walls!), sticky notes and favorite colorful markers and pens. Yep, this is strategic planning at Prosper Creatively!
After you’ve gathered your favorite tools, it’s time to ask yourself a few questions and to answer truthfully:
• What did you accomplish in the last six months?
• What’s underway, but not yet completed?
• Is your direction still making sense?
• Did you meet your revenue goals?
• Are you contacting the right clients/customers?
• Are you marketing where your ideal customers are?
• Do you have the right clients/customers contacting you?
• Are there habits you need to change?
• What do you need to start doing?
• What really worked in the last six months?
• What are you going to do differently?
• Who do you need to add to your team?
• How’s your follow up going?
• Have you posted your blog and your newsletter consistently?
• Did you reach any of your big goals?
o If you did, what’s next for your vision board and business plan?
This should be a fun activity. While you may not have achieved everything you set out to achieve, you should celebrate your successes, fairly review what might not have worked out so well and make a plan for success for the remainder of 2013. When you really pay attention to your business, you know what’s going on and you’re better equipped to make sound decisions. Plus, you can get excited about what’s coming up in the next several months.
So, jot down some thoughts and observations in your journal. Think honestly about your results and how you feel about them. Think about what really floats your boat and what you could be happy letting go. Think realistically about what you can achieve and decide what you really want to go after. Then whip out the sticky notes and your calendar and project planning paper and get to work planning out the next six months. Be sure to deal with the major areas of your business plan, like revenue, marketing, your key team members, operations, action planning and what’s going on in your industry.
I find that working backwards is rather effective. For example, let’s say I want to build a new webinar series. First I’ll figure out when I think I’d like to launch the series and put a sticky note on that date. Then I work backwards and I figure out how long it will take to develop the content for each session, how long it will take to market it, etc., etc., and put a sticky note on each of those dates. Obviously you’ll soon see if the timing makes sense just by looking at the calendar. Plus, it’s WAY easy to make adjustments with sticky notes just by yanking them off and repositioning them in a new spot.
Let’s make your second half of 2013 SING!
Cass Mullane’s calm, comfortable approach consistently yields positive results for clients. Her business and personal coaching practice, www.ProsperCreatively.com, specializes in delivering solid left brain business skills to right brainers and creatives in a fun, visual way. Cass is is one of our licensed Right-Brain Business Plan® Facilitators.”