’Tis the season to start looking at your plan for 2020, if you haven’t already done so, and I always advise my clients to start with the end in mind.
Here are some good questions to ask yourself that will help you hone in on what you want to create in the New Year:
- What does a full practice look and feel like for me?
- What does that mean for my client acquisition plan and timing in 2020?
- What is the experience I want to create in my business, and how is that different from what I’ve done before?
Based on your answers, you can formulate S.M.A.R.T.E.R. goals. Goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Bound, Exciting and Resonant.
When you have S.M.A.R.T.E.R. goals, you can create a strategic business plan that maps to those goals. At the very least, you should have 2-3 primary business development strategies you ENJOY that keep the pipeline of new clients full.
In addition to your main plan (this is what I call the Medium Plan), I also recommend having a Low Plan and a High Plan.
The Low Plan: This is the bare minimum of business development activity you will do regardless of how wildly successful you are. You can coast along on the Low Plan when referrals are flooding in and things are humming along nicely. To be honest, I’ve been on the Low Plan for about five years, and for me that plan includes creating three monthly blogs, sending out my newsletter three times a month (which is connected to my blogging) and speaking about 4-6 times per year. And that’s it.
The Medium Plan: My medium looks like doing more speaking events through my Strategic Alliances, and relaunching a paid program I’ve updated and use with my clients. I haven’t needed to do this plan, so I may choose to do those things if they feel fun and easy. And if my goals don’t continue to be met and exceed with my Low Plan, I can activate this plan seamlessly.
The High Plan: What are some things you can do quickly and easily to counter-balance your business? It’s the “oh, shit” plan for the moments when you realize, “Whoa! I was supposed to enroll four new clients this quarter and I only enrolled one!” These are those activities you can do quickly and easily to move that dial.
In sum, I encourage people to have a regular plan, and also re-evaluate each quarter. If you reach all your goals and it is June, are there activities you want to back burner? Or, if you realize that you’ve fallen behind, you can tap into your High Plan to get things moving again.
This December, create your Low, Medium and High Plans. They will give you not only peace of mind, but also a clear roadmap for your business. Will you adopt a low/medium/high plan for 2020? I’d love to hear what your planning best practices are!
Tara Butler Floch