Getting Ready for 2013

So lets get started, today we will be discussing, getting you ready for 2013.

We will look at three areas:

  • review how 2012 has been for you and your business
  • create goals for 2013
  • develop a springboard for your success

As we move towards the end of the year, we have a fantastic opportunity to take stock and to plan a brighter year for our business. I am recommending to all of my clients that they start their annual reviews now, and then they have a strong foundation upon which to build their 2013 plans.

If you don’t have a set of financial targets for your business (revenue and profit) then frankly, you have an expensive hobby. That may be tough to hear but it’s time to embrace what you have created and step up!

From research we conducted earlier this year of 300 women business owners, 68% of them are earning less now than when they had a job. I think this is such a shame. We deserve to have thriving businesses and to enjoy the benefits that brings, both financial and the feeling of doing work we love and find rewarding.

Chances are you fall into the 68%. And from the research, the majority of the women were unhappy with their earnings. Is this you?

OH!!! Was that you yawning at the thought of doing a business review and plan??? Believe me, it doesn’t have to be dull! It’s essential for the business and it can be done in a way that is energetic, developmental and inspiring. Because we all need a plan that inspires us!

Lets start with reviewing 2012

Step 1: Where Am I?

Before we can set off on any adventure, we need to know where we are starting from.

Time to look at the numbers! What has your revenue been for 2012 so far? What do you think will come in for the rest of the year? The easy way to work this number out is to add all your invoices together, and then add any quotes or proposals for work you have.

And how much profit have you made or not? What have you spent against your business? The easy way to calculate profit is to subtract what you have spent on the business from your total amount you have invoiced.

So now, you will have two numbers:

  1. Turnover for the year
  2. Profit or Loss

Step 2: How Does That Feel?

Now you have the numbers – what do you think? Are you surprised, happy or a little disappointed?  Whatever the numbers are let them empower you. Because once you have the facts and a foundation of where you are right now, then you know what you are moving forward from. Always think with the numbers that information is power!

Write down how you really feel about these numbers.

Step 3: What’s Worked This Year?

Before we start creating new plans and new ideas for the business activity, let’s review what has worked really well in the last year. I think it’s important to larn from what we have done. When you run your own business it is very important to take time out and work ON the business.

When we think about planed for 2013 its not about reinventing the wheel. Let’s learn from what we have done and do more of what’s worked. Write down 10 things you have done which you know have helped generate new business for you.

Some ideas to get you started….a new website, joined a new networking group, acquired three new retailers, exhibited at a trade show etc etc

Step 4: What Didn’t Work

Be honest. Chances are you tried some things this year that you wish you hadn’t. But you know, business is often about experimenting and change, so at least you tried! And take the positive from these misadventures that now you have more knowledge about what doesn’t work for your business so you won’t make the same mistake again.

Write down 10 things that you know used up your precious time, energy and money that didn’t help your business grow.

When the call is over, spend some time reflecting on why these activities didn’t work – was it the wrong target market, not enough investment, maybe the offer wasn’t clear enough, the event didn’t get enough people., no follow up.

These four steps will have bought up a lot for you….take some time after the call – block it out in your diary to really reflect further and enjoy pondering what’s worked and what hasn’t.

Remember – we don’t get our time back, so you need to make it count.

Stage 2: What do you want in 2013??

Step 5: What Is Your Dream for your Business

If someone asked you,  ‘if you could have anything for your business’ what would you answer? What is that big dream for your business? When you set it up with that initial passion and enthusiasm, what did you hope to achieve?

If you are drawing a blank when I ask that question, then think about it in this way. Imagine it is 2017….what would you like your business to be doing? What type of customers would you like? Where will your business be?

What will you LOVE about your business – what will you be saying about it?

Spend a few minutes jotting down some ideas…….

Step 6: What Could You Achieve in 2013?

Now bring your thinking to December 2013. What do you want your business to achieve by then? What do you need to have done to start to really make your dream a reality?

Imagine it is December 2013, and you are on another call with me…and imagine I asked you how your year has been ….what would you like to tell me?

To help you with this I’m going to ask you some questions about what your ideal business will be in a years time….

i)                How many clients

ii)               What types of products or services

iii)              What Markets I operate in

iv)             What prospects and customers think of my brand

v)              What else for your business?

Step 7: Numbers for 2013

Lets bring this all together……Looking at Step 1 and Step 6 – what are realistic revenue and profit targets for your business in 2013?

Remember how I said that if you don’t have financial targets for your business it is an expensive hobby? Well, now I would love you to create some actual numbers….

Think about what would make you think that this business is ‘worth it’ and that you are making the money you deserve?

Write down what you think an achievable revenue target would be or 2013,

And now a profit target

These aren’t set in store and of course you can discuss them with your accountant, but take the first step and commit something to paper. It will  make all the difference to how you view you business and planning.

So there we have the review of 2012, and some goals to really go after for 2013!

Let’s create a springboard for you to get your goals!

Step 8: Activity to Get the Goals

Having goals for your business is a fantastic start to shift it from an expensive hobby to a business. Having the goals is only one part of the planning. You now need to determine how you will get those goals.

Reviewing what you wrote in Step 3 and Step 4, think about what you need to do more of in the coming year to drive your business towards those goals.  You know from Step 4 what not to do!

Also think honestly about those activities which you know you need to do but maybe you lacked the courage to do them. Maybe you were a little scared of rejection or what someone may think. Write those down! This will be your year to do those activities. Because as you grow and stretch yourself to do those things, your business will grow to!

This is something you may want to do after the call as I recommend that you do your plans on a post it note – so have spend some time with yourself or business partner and brainstorm all of those activities and ideas you know based on your previous work will really help the business achieve its goals. Just go for it – when you are in this mode, don’t censor, just write it down!

Step 9: Line your Activities up by Date

Time to get into planning! Take all of your fantastic ideas from above (remember one idea on one post it note) and arrange them by the dates you will do them. The beauty of pot-it note planning is that you can arrange, change and re-arrange if things don’t look right.

Step 10: Chunk It Down!

Once you have done this, time to get into more detail. Do you need to break down all of the activities above into smaller, bite-size chunks? It is much easier to do an activity when we break it into the smallest piece possible.  Use more post it notes do to this…then rearrange them so they are all in order!

Step 11. Add cost estimates to the activity

You may have a fantastic list of activities. It is important to think about your profit goals…and to make sure that you can fund the list of activities and still make the money you want.

Spend some time estimating the coast of each activity. And place it next to the relevant post it note.

Add them up for the year, and then to help your cash flow, for each month.

Ta dah!!!!!  You know have a business plan for your business! No longer is it an expensive hobby. You have financial targets and a detailed activity plan to get them!

Make the time to do the tasks, and the plan will magically come to life!

First things first though, after all that effort, reward yourself!  Take yourself out, have a cool glass of wine, treat yourself and get your nails done. Whatever it is. You have truly taken the first step to running your business…like a business! And that deserves a celebration

I would love to know what action you will take as a result of this call – email me and tell me!

I hope you have found the call a worthwhile investment of your time.

I know how precious time is…..and that with money and energy make up the three most precious resources for a business owner.

If some of what we spoke about tonight resonated with you

–        no goals, no plan or missing having people around you to support and stretch you

–        then you will love my Focus and Fire Up! sessions

Imagine feeling confident you are spending your precious time, money and energy working on those areas you know will build your business.

Sometimes you miss your old job and you would love to get out of the day to day minutiae of your business. You know that being at this level of detail all the time will not get you the business you want nor the income.

In fact you would love an away day to get your thinking straight. You would love to think big but you don’t have anyone to bounce your ideas off, nor do you have someone to help you take your ideas and help them flourish. You know that you would love to have the time to work on your business, get straight on your strategy, your target market and those key areas you need to focus on to achieve your goals.

  • You want to enter 2013 knowing that you have got a solid plan to achieve your business goals and that you have learnt from your exp Use your time, money and energy more effectively because you will know what to focus on to make your business successful
  • Get clear on what you need to do to drive your business
  • Gain a better understanding of who your ideal customer is, in detail, which will help you craft more effective marketing messages and materials
  • Have a sounding board to talk about any ideas, issues or concerns that you may have
  • Get fired up about the future of your business and your potential
  • Get reinvigorated about your business which will help you increase your energy and passion
  • Feel more confident, in control and focused!

Thanks for your time and I wish you the best success with your business.

I would love to know your thoughts and actions from this call, please leave me a comment below and tell me!

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