At this time of year everyone talks planning – including myself – is a very important part of running a successful business.
But one of the things that I also talk about is reflecting on the previous year.
How were things financially? How did my goals turn out? And inevitably I come to that one question … what remains to be done I mean, what did I start but never finish?
Have you ever made a list of the things you “intended” to do during the year and evaluated it at the end of the year?
It’s a really good exercise, not from a negative point of view, but from (I think) a very positive one.
This is what I mean …
- Make a list of training classes that you have purchased in the last year.
- Identify what you wanted to learn of each class.
- Indicate if you completed the training.
- Indicate if you implemented the training in your business
Do this for everything that started during the year … books you bought, subscriptions or lists you signed up for… Everything you can think of.
Now if you’re a serial learner like me … you might have a long list. And there is nothing wrong with that!
But it is the exercise that is important.
Even if your list has incomplete items (Welcome to the club!) here is the positive part… the the intention was there every time, so that you build your business or to make some kind of improvement.
So now I want you to make a different list … What remains to be done?
- Training Material – What courses did you sign up for but didn’t actually finish?
- Books to read: what did you buy that is gathering dust?
- Networking event follow-up: who did you meet who you didn’t connect with after the event?
These kinds of things are great ways to start the new year. Because you’ve already started!
Don’t look at it as a failed attempt, look at it as a chance move along.
Every year we want to build and grow our business; change is the only thing that can be a lot of fun. It keeps your business interesting and keeps you interested in doing it!
My list is long … I’m not going to lie! I have 3 self-study programs that I signed up for (all paid for!) And I haven’t worked in any of them. I am looking at 5 books that I bought during the year, for various reasons, and they are gathering dust on my desk and on my bookshelf. I bought a CRM system that is all set up and ready to go every day, and I am still doing my follow-up manually.
What do I take from these things? That I had great intentions at some point, and my goal – I say it here publicly so you can hold me accountable! – is to complete all these things in the first quarter of 2016.
I’ll make a plan to read those books and do those self-study programs, and I’ll use my CRM. But my plan will include a suitable schedule and reason for making each piece. When the intention to improve your business hits you, and you buy something (or download something), implementation is the key. You are interested in that “thing” for a reason. It is important to implement it immediately!
Now even though my list above is long, I also look at the things I bought and DID implement. I don’t want you to think I’m a Quit LOL – I’m constantly learning and growing in my business. It is also very important to congratulate yourself on the things you did. It is a balance.
I’d love to hear what you have left to do at your desk, and what you will commit to doing for the new year!