A key factor in determining the success of any business is the ability to plan. Many business owners get in a hurry to get up and running and end up chasing their tails, getting overwhelmed, or worse, going out of business. For real business results, planning begins at the end and works it’s way back to the present.

Abraham Lincoln said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the ax.”  Great businesses come from great plans. How much time have you spent on your business rather than in your business? Do you have a clear brand, marketing plan, financial strategy and growth goals? Have you taken the time to be clear about what you are trying to achieve?

Busyness is not good business.

Are you a business owner who is always running around and putting out fires or are you working strategically according to a well-developed plan? Putting the effort into planning at the front end increases the effectiveness and efficiency of your time and efforts as well as that of your employees.

Often business owners minimize the importance (as well as the time) they put into the planning and strategy that could serve as their guide. By doing so they are losing out on the clear pathways and procedures it could provide. When you think of setting goals for real business results, start with three key areas of focus:

  • Your direction & focus
  • Your movement & momentum
  • The person you will become in the process

Yes, that last area is about you as a person. The initial goal-setting and planning has to include you and your life as it relates to your business. If you begin to see real business results, but lose your marriage, miss out on engaging with your children and friends, and see your health decline due to neglect from working all the time, what have you ultimately gained? What do you want for your life as well as your business? Maintaining work/life balance is critical to success in your business as well as your life. Be sure to include it in your business planning from the start.

As you begin to clarify your vision around the end results you desire, working backward to the present becomes a matter of details, people and processes. The inspiration your clear vision can give you is in part the fuel that can keep you on your course and in the game. It’s more than just a plan – it’s the purpose and intent that becomes your legacy. It should stretch you and it should include your core values and purpose. Once you understand and are clear about why you are doing something, it is much easier to get clear on what you need to do and how you are going to do it.

Real business results come from a well-thought out, strategic plan based on a clear vision of the future as its starting point. Take a few moments to write out your goals for your business and your life to get started today.

Contact us if you would like help creating your plan to get real business results for yourself. We are here to help. With ActionCOACH, Business is Booming!