Tag Archives: Planning

Want To Have a Powerful 2016? Do This First.

1.6.16All the resolutions, intentions, goals, and planning for your business will be diluted until you take the time to complete your 2015 business year.  This is serious.  You will suffer from a syndrome called: Rehearsal Exhaustion.  What is that you may be asking?  According to changingminds.org, Rehearsal Exhaustion is “constantly referring back to our past to make sure we don’t forget it, and to predict possible future outcomes.  As more and more things are left incomplete, we are more and more distracted and exhausted by the ever-increasing rehearsal.”

Yes, that’s right, without completing your 2015 business you will be destined to replay it and the more you do that, the more dispirited you will become about creating newly in 2016.

So what is the process of completion?  It is the conscious act of reviewing what we did or didn’t accomplish in 2015.  Declaring that it was in the past, that you are okay with what happened, and can give up the right to beat yourself up about it in the present.  By doing that, we are freed up to create a new future which is not bogged down by the past.

It makes sense, doesn’t it?  If something is incomplete, we do continue referring back to it to make sure we don’t forget it.  So to avoid that state of mind, let’s just complete 2015 and then be ready to move on to 2016.  This isn’t hard.  It does require some time and thought.  What are the working parts of your business that you may want to complete?  Here are some examples of questions to ask yourself.  This list certainly is not exhaustive so please add to it.

Regarding your Business in 2015:

  • Who were you being?
  • What did you accomplish?
  • What did you learn?
  • What do you need to improve?
  • What challenges did you have?
  • How were your relationships with your staff? Clients? Contractors?  What could change?
  • What new products did you offer?
  • How well did your marketing work?  What worked best about your marketing?
  • What new marketing ventures did you try?  How did they work?
  • What product did you sell the most?  The least?
  • What was your gross profit, expenses, net profit?
  • Overall what was the best thing about your business in 2015?
  • What was the worst thing about your business in 2015? What would you do differently if you could?

If you get stuck on doing this completion process alone, please contact me.  I am here for you.


How is your Overhang for 2015?

120314December is an important time of the year for entrepreneurs to plan for the next year.  The first part of planning is reviewing what has been accomplished to date.  Asking the questions: What worked? What did not work? And why?  Each question will give you some answers that provide insight into planning for greater success in 2015.  It’s obvious that you will want to continue with what worked, but it is not so clear about what you should do with what didn’t work.

This is where you need to be honest with yourself and decide what to do with what didn’t work.  Using the 3 “B’s” can come in handy.  The 3 “B’s” is a coaching tool developed by Martha Beck to use when what is not working is staring you in the face.  You really don’t want to deal with it.  The 3 “B’s” are: Barter it, Bag it, Better it.

My personal favorite is “Bag it”.  If something really, really doesn’t work then just stop doing it.  Figuratively, throw it away.  You will find it’s quite freeing.

However, most items that “don’t work” will be redeemed with either “bartering it” or “bettering” it.  Don’t like to post blogs?  Hire a personal assistant who is happy to do that for you.  Hate working on Saturdays?  Then change your schedule so that you have the time off you crave.

Once you have thoroughly reviewed your business actions, you are ready to start planning for the new year.  A tool that is very useful for business owners is to chart their overhang for the next year.  Charting overhang is best done on a spreadsheet.  Although it seems similar to the Sales Forecast, it is different in that you are charting already closed business not projected closed business.  In very simple business terms, “overhang” is the monies or sales you have already closed and the work and payment for the work is expected in a certain time frame during the next year.  For example: A client closes a sale at mid-December, the work is scheduled to begin in February 2015 and the invoices will be paid in 2015.  The payment for the contract is overhang.  Charting your overhang for 2015 will begin to inform you about actions to take now in order to cause the greatest amount of overhang for your business.

In the space below, let me know if this way of planning your business for 2015 is useful to you.  If you already chart overhang, please share how it is useful to you.  I look forward to hearing from you!


Do These Simple Actions Before You Go On Vacation To Insure Business Is Occurring

73014The end of July is occurring this week.  The beginning of August is tantalizingly close and so is your long awaited vacation.  Congratulations!

Here are some tips to have this vacation be relaxing and support a continuance of your business while you “vacate”.  Some simple actions to take before your vacation can prevent you from having to pick up the pieces of a stalled business and start over.  I am not saying don’t be on vacation.  I am saying prepare to set up your business so that it continues seamlessly while you are gone.

The easiest way to set up your business so that your clients aren’t left wondering about what happened to you is to communicate your plans to your clients.  This simple step seems like a “no brainer” however I have known many business people who just don’t say anything to their clients.  The first clue that a client gets about your absence is a sterile email responder stating the news.  That type of communication leaves the client high and hanging on the hope that you will see their email asking for service.  Instead, let them know who they can contact when you are gone.  Also, include that information in your email responder.

If you are the sole service provider in your business, set up abbreviated business hours for yourself so that you are responding to clients.  Set the time up so its compatible with whom you are traveling, so that they know that between certain times every day, you will be working.

Be certain that you have the communication tools you use with you and that they will work in your new destination.  Often, it does sound good to you to say, I will use Skype or your cell phone only to find out where you are going does not provide internet and or Wi-Fi or that it is too expensive to use.  Find out what is available before you go.  If you can set up the type of availability you need before you go, do that.  Yes, it does take some extra time to set it up but you will be so glad that you did once you are there.  Many cell phone providers have special low cost vacation plans that you can add on for the days that you are gone.  These plans can save you from paying high roaming fees.

Think through your typical business day, and make a list of what you use every day in the course of doing business.  Make sure you have those items on your portable computer.  Try out a typical business transaction before you go, and make sure it works without any flaws.  Make a paper back up to carry with you just in case you have serious computer glitch.

This list is certainly not exhaustive; it is intended to stimulate your thinking ahead of the vacation, so that business can occur and you can enjoy yourself.

I am very interested to hear what you would add to the list or take off the list.

Have a wonderful vacation!


Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net