I’m going to give you the very simple planning process that I personally use right now.
The Simple Success Planning Method
The first thing that we all need to accept is that we’re all busy…but usually we’re busy just doing the things needed to get though the day rather than the things that will move us toward our Ultimate Business as quickly as we would like.
To avoid that, you need to plan how to move things forward in a simple process that actually has real benefits that you can use.
If you are like me then I’m sure you are reading different blogs and posts from successful entrepreneurs on how to achieve business success.
So what you need to do is set aside about an hour (no more than 90 minutes) to develop your business growth plan and the strategy you are going to use to make it happen.
I need you to pull out a single sheet of paper and you are going to answer these 3 questions:
1. Where do you want to be by the end of next year?
2. Where are you now?
3. How will you get from where you are now to where you want to be?
Once we answer those questions you will be prepared with everything you will need to take your business to the next level.
Where do you want to go?
For me this encompasses my Vision…what I want to be known for…and my Yearly Objectives…how I will measure success.
Here are 4 simple questions to help you figure out your Vision:
1. How good do you want to be?
2. What are you providing?
3. Who do you serve?
4. What is the geographic scope of your business?
My Vision is to be the #1 Solution For Helping Tennis Entrepreneurs to Build Their Perfect Businesses.
Objectives are measures of your success and your business performance.
To list your objectives:
1. Determine what you are going to measure. Use the KISS method and Keep it simple and straightforward.
2. Decide how you are going to measure it.
3. Describe specifically what the target is for each measure.
My Yearly Objectives aren’t quite done yet, but here are some ideas that you might use for your tennis programs:
- Increase membership by 10%
- Increase adult and junior programs lesson revenue by 15% without increasing prices
- Increase private lesson revenue by 10% without increasing prices
Where are you now?
Once you have figured out where you want to go you need to be clear about where you are today and what has to change for you to get to where you want to be.
For each of us there are probably a lot of little things standing between us and our Perfect Business – but for the purposes of planning we’re going to focus on the 20% that will give us the 80% of the results we’re looking for. Remember the 80/20 rule because it works.
So in your business or businesses:
What has to change in your Marketing, Selling, and Promotion to hit your goals?
What has to change in your Personnel and Staffing to hit your goals?
What has to change in the Training and Coaching you deliver to hit your goals?
What has to change in your Business Management & Finances to hit your goals?
What has to change in YOU to hit your goals?
Now, once you’ve written down the things that need to change, go through and rank them in order of importance. Then, starting at the top of the list - start thinking about what strategy would directly address and resolve that issue for you.
Keep that strategy list handy because you will need to refer back to it.
Here are some ideas for your Junior Programs
- Have a junior player of the week
- Increase junior play by allowing kids free indoor court time in “off” times
- Not enough “relationship” marketing to parents about all of the programs we offer….yes you have to “talk” to parents about what programs are best for their kids
How are you going to go from here to there?
This is where you are going to develop your Action Plan…a combination of your Strategies, Policies, and your Priorities.
Our Strategies and Policies are crucial because they give us the focus and clarity we need to set our Priorities by serving as the bridge from where we are to where we want to be.
Here’s a simple way to get clear on your Strategies:
Desired Outcome using Strategic Decisions / Actions
Here’s an example:
Increase Membership by Implementing Referral Programs with our current customer base
Improve the Coaching and Training that We Deliver by Providing Better In-House Staff Development during our weekly meetings
Once we’ve decided on our strategies, all that remains is to set priorities – to decide which Specific Actions we’ll take and when we’ll take them by.
Now the trick for you is to focus on the action and completing the task or project by a specific date.
Here are a few examples of Priorities:
- Launch a Referral Campaign by February 1st.
- Attend a USPTA Conference by April 1st even if I have to attend a conference out of my section.
- Create 3 New Adult and Junior Programs by February 1 to implement for the spring season
You should try to limit the number of Priorities to about 3-5 per Quarter as you only ‘get paid for done.’
The real strength of this sort of approach is that it makes your business growth plan come to life.
To keep the plan current try to follow this kind of pattern:
Sometime this week complete the planning approach I just listed…then at least every quarter, review and reset priorities…and celebrate the progress that you and your staff has made.
And that’s your Simple Success Planning Method for 2016.
Nothing too complicated and it’s really effective if you use it.
So take the time this week or at the beginning of next week and plan out your 2016 so it is a huge success!