As much as I chuckle when I hear people say on the Fourth of July that summer is almost over, I must admit that I am futuristic. I am always creating a vision for what’s next. As I write this during the last week of August, with three weeks of summer left, I am in the middle of business planning for 2020.
It is hard to believe that NPC was launched three short months ago. While feeling fortunate to have spent quality time with domestic and international family and friends this summer, most of the summer was a time of persistence for me. The sweet reward of focusing on my new business during the summer months is feeling ready to meet September, October, and November with concrete goals, plans, and collaborations, as well as the seeds of my vision for 2020. This makes my futuristic mind jump for joy!
Here is a sneak-peak into my goal assessment and reflection process for finishing the current year strong and preparing my business for the New Year.
Reflect and Set Goals
1. I consider September, October, and November to be the last working months of the year from a business perspective. I will work in December, but clients and other entrepreneurs will have little time to collaborate then, so I plan accordingly. December (like August) is a great time to reflect, strategize, readjust, and refine my weekly, monthly, and quarterly goals.
2. I tend to plan with precision for the next ~ two months and set high-level goals for the remaining months. I use an Excel spreadsheet or Google sheet (great for team collaboration). I create a sheet for each month, insert a calendar for the month on the left side, and list goals on the right side. I then update the calendar with the activities as I schedule them to reach my monthly goals. As I know more about my specific goals, I list the details in the desired month and define the activities to achieve the goals. This is a great confidence booster for those whirlwind months when you feel like your moving from one urgent mission to the next. It’s satisfying to see all that you have accomplished when you have time to reflect on how each of the activities was tied to your over-arching goals.
3. I believe work-life balance goals belong in our plan. I like to assess how I’m doing on a monthly basis. For example, this year, I set goals for the total number of clients with whom I wished to work. I loosely set a goal for the days and hours of my work schedule. However, I initially had no written goals for networking activities/events, visibility, community sponsorship (including budget), and conferences. Needless to say, the unplanned activities impacted my overall work-life balance. I have updated my 2019 spreadsheet with the unanticipated accomplishments, continue to assess this year’s results and incorporate related goals into my 2020 plan. Plans are living documents that mature over time.
Define Opportunities to Stretch
1. At the end of 2019, I will start experimenting with expanding client geography and work on refining the virtual client experience. Technology makes virtual collaboration easy and provides an opportunity to help prepare many more optimistic mortals with Personal Contingency Plans.
2. During the end of this year, I will more purposefully identify opportunities to collaborate with other entrepreneurs to create educational and networking events in 2020.
I would love to hear how you approach assessing your business’ performance to ensure a strong finish and a strategic start to the New Year.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.