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Posts Tagged ‘business planning’

When you start your business, almost any seasoned business owner or your counselor at the Small Business Development Center will tell you that you need a business plan. Basically, writing down your goals for your business and how you get there.

There have been numerous books written on this subject too. If you want something, write it down. My favorite is Write It Down, Make It Happen.

And if you’ve read or seen The Secret, you know that the Law of Attraction works this way too. Write down all the things you’re grateful for. And then write down your intentions as if they’ve already happened. To be honest, some of this has worked for me in some very big ways. Some, not so much. Of course, I’m not always clear on my intentions too. For example, I’d love a thriving bookbinding business, but I’d also like to sleep. So while I know I’d rather be in business entirely for myself, it has its pros and cons. And until I can get clear on those, this goal may continue to elude me.

But I digress…. I recently stumbled on a very cool website called 43 Things. It is a social network of sorts with the sole purpose of giving people a place to write down their goals, share their successes and be cheered on to completion. For now it’s free and kinda cool. And you don’t have to have 43 goals, but hey, if you start setting intentions, you might be surprised!

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I’m not very organized. I’ll admit that right up front. Honestly, I don’t know many creative people who are. I don’t like to plan and I’m easily distracted. Like, for example, right now, I should be completing the orders that I promised myself I would get done today (I so need deadlines to get anything accomplished), and instead inspiration struck me to write about planning instead. Talk about procrastination.

But this is important too, and maybe as I write it, I’ll even get the message.

Anyway, I recently started Weight Watchers again after several vain attempts to lose a few pounds on my own, obviously unsuccessfully.

Everybody thinks success from Weight Watchers comes from being held accountable at weigh-ins and inspiration from the meetings. And while that works for some, if you’ve ever attended a weight watchers meeting, you know that many people gain each week as well. That’s because the true key to being a successful weight watcher is planning. The people who lose 100 pounds plan their food every day within their points and they write it down. The key phrase here is “write it down.” On my last dieting attempt three months ago, I did plan what I ate, but I didn’t write it down, and ate more than I’d planned on most days. I lost a couple of pounds, but after a month, I got frustrated and went back to my old ways. This time, with Weight Watchers, in the very first week, I planned my meals, wrote down everything I ate, and I lost more weight in a week than I lost in an entire month. Hmmmmm….

Ok, so think about your business. Are you planning your days? Do you have set goals? Are you plotting out how you will reach those goals? I haven’t been, and I’ve not gotten where I’d like my business to be. But I’m going to change that this week. I’m not just going to plan what I’ll get done that day (because it never gets done); I’m going to plan for my business’s future too, and I’m going to write it down.

I know the saying “The best laid plans of mice and men…” I get that all plans don’t work exactly the way you’d hoped, but that’s why you can adjust them as needed.

There are a couple of great resources to get you writing down what you want and how to get there.

First, a great book that everyone should read:

Write It Down, Make It Happen by Henriette Ann Klauser

If you click on it, it will take you to the Amazon page for the book.

And on ladieswholaunch.com, a social network and in-person program for women entrepreneurs, there are business plan guides for startup businesses and established businesses looking to get to the next level. You can find them under business templates and docs, along with a host of other business templates and documents. Check it out at Ladies Who Launch.

There is also a great business plan guide from an episode of Donny Deutsch’s Big Idea. The episode was Risking to Win and you can find the ten-question planning tool here.

Ok, I have some planning to do.

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