You wouldn’t set out on a long car journey without knowing your destination, not unless you want to waste an awful lot of time and money. The same applies to your business.  

If you don’t know what your goal is then you have no target to focus on.  Your decision-making becomes reactive since there is no forward-looking element to it.  Business management lacks consistency since there is no point on the horizon to guide your thinking.

Whatever stage your business is at, taking time to think about what you are actually trying to achieve is invaluable. So if you haven’t already done so…

Take a blank piece of paper.

  • Mentally put to one side all your current problems, issues and constraints (Trust us!).
  • Write down in bullet-point fashion what it is that you really want to achieve with your business. This should be no more than half a dozen points but could be as few as one.
  • Frame It!  Now you have some goals.

Now let’s return to the car journey. You know your destination, but that’s not enough on a long trip. You need a map or a Sat-Nav to get you there; otherwise you run the risk of a wrong turn at every junction.  

In business, knowing your goals is a big step forward but it is equally important that you have a plan for getting there.  

A plan will show you the most effective route and will tell you what’s possible and what changes are needed.  More importantly, as circumstances require change, so the existence of a plan, like a map for your business, will help you pick the most effective route for getting back on track.  Guesswork is removed from your decision-making.

Creating an effective business plan isn’t a five-minute exercise. Critically it must be your plan, not something put together by an accountant to keep the bank happy.  

However, it is very difficult to create an achievable and meaningful plan without a trained professional to guide and assist you and your accountant should be ideal for this role.

The plan should never be seen as fixed. It will continue to evolve, both during its creation and implementation.

Action points

Take a blank piece of paper.

  • Mentally put to one side all your current problems, issues and constraints (Trust us!).
  • Write down in bullet-point fashion what it is that you really want to achieve with your business. This should be no more than half a dozen points but could be as few as one.
  • Frame It!  Now you have some goals.

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