A little planning can go a long way.
Whether you are a brand new business owner or have been in business for years, there is a high probability that you have winged it somewhere along the way. And if I was a gambling woman, I would say that you have had a few messes here and there to clean up.
I have been in business for myself for the past seven years. And I can promise you that I have cleaned up a mess or two of my own because I failed to put the thought and planning into my business that I needed to so I could get the best results.
At times in my business, I felt totally unqualified. That is when I realized that business owners that have a plan feel more confident and are more successful.
The definition of a "Plan" is: "A detailed proposal for doing or achieving something." By definition, a plan is in place to help us accomplish something, to get the results we want. That's what it's for! When there is a plan laid out - steps to mark off as we go - we have direction and a course of action.
As a business owner, proper planning, when put into place ahead of time, can help you execute projects, reach your goals and fulfill your business and life vision!
There are countless studies to prove the impact having a solid plan can make on any goal. Think about those that try to lose weight with a plan and those that go at it without a plan. People who follow an exercise plan are twice as likely to lose weight than those that don't.
Similarly, entrepreneurs that follow a simple business plan double their chances of success. I'll take those odds!
If you want to grow a business you don't need a 15 page detailed plan, but you do need a simple plan in place to give you direction.
- What are your goals for the business?
- What do you hope it will do for you and your family?
- What hours will you work?
- How much money will you invest?
- Where will you sell your products?
So many people get started with their business without knowing where they are headed. This quickly pulls them off course and they feel overwhelmed and defeated. If you will start with a simple plan that answers those basic questions, you will be more likely to stay on course and reach your destination.
Want my "Simple Business Blueprint"? It's a free download you can get by clicking the button below. I made it for the small business owner that needs a little extra help mapping out her business plan in an uber simple way. I also recorded a three part training video series where I walk you through each step of the blueprint. Click the button below to snag it!
Here are some basic reasons why planning is so important for your small business...
#1 PLANNING GIVES YOU DIRECTION
Benjamin Franklin said, "Failing to plan is planning to fail." Without a plan in place, we don't have a direction. We're just flying by the seat of our pants and reacting as things come our way each day.
But having a well thought out plan for our business gives us direction. We know where our destination is so we create a roadmap to follow. We are much less likely to get off track when we have a plan in place.
#2 PLANNING KEEPS YOU FOCUSED
As a business owner that is trying to grow a profitable business, if you don't relentlessly focus on what propels your business forward and stay grounded as things happen, you'll never see the true rewards.
Sure, we all like to do different things and can get caught up in that new shiny project, but we have to be able to answer these questions easily to know we are staying focused on our business plans:
- Is doing this new thing going to lead to achieving what I want from my business?
- Beyond a feeling of satisfaction of completing this new task, how is it driving my business closer to my desired goal?
- Why am I doing what I am doing in this moment?
#3 PLANNING HELPS YOU TAKE ACTION
There's motivation that comes from having a detailed plan. A plan also helps you to create action steps that will propel your business forward. A plan turns into goals, goals turn into action steps, and consistent action turns into results. Results = profits.
#4 PLANNING GIVES YOU NEW INSIGHTS IN YOUR BUSINESS
Planning helps you develop your skills as an entrepreneur, giving you a better shot at success.
What do I mean by this? Think of it this way. As you are creating your plan for your business you will start to dig deeper into the elements that are necessary in building a profitable business. This will reveal to you the places you need to grow in your knowledge and skill set. It will also reveal to you the places you may need to outsource or hire someone else to do that specific thing for you.
Overall, planning helps you identify your strengths and weaknesses and how to manage them inside your business.
#5 PLANNING CHALLENGES AND CHANGES YOUR VIEW
As you go through the planning process, your perspectives will shift and change. This is very healthy for your business. The planning process challenges you to dive deeper, look at things from your customers' perspective, and pushes you to reach outside your comfort zone.
None of us want to fail, nor do we plan on it. But without an ongoing, simple business blueprint in place, we certainly are planning to be overwhelmed, distracted and pulled off course on a regular basis.
Creating a business plan can feel a little overwhelming if you haven't done it before. That's why I created my "Simple Business Blueprint".
Not only can you download the PDF here to use as your guide, but I have also created a three part video training series where I walk you through each step of the blueprint. Click the image below so you can download your copy of the blueprint and I will send you the training videos as a bonus! yay!
Got questions? Leave a comment and let's chat!
AUTHOR: REBECCA RENFROW
Rebecca Renfrow helps women business owners push forward and reach their goals so they can grow a thriving business that they love and live their life on purpose. She is also the co-owner of Socially Tailored Marketing, a freelance firm that specializes in helping entrepreneurs who want to build their brand and influence in the marketplace but feel overwhelmed trying to keep up with the ever changing rules of social media and the time it takes to learn the many facets of online marketing. She is passionate about helping women entrepreneurs live their life on purpose because otherwise, what's the point?!