Back to School is time to business plan

Remember when you went back to school after the summer holidays?

I remember getting new bits of uniform, exercise books (ready for the sticky-back plastic) and a new timetable. I felt I was starting the new school year with big plans and intentions, often to do better than the previous year.

That newness gradually wore off although some of my plans often made it through to the Christmas break. Ready for a less vigorous restart in January.

A new business ‘year’?

The same thinking applies for many of us in business. August continues to be a tough month for busy business – everybody is on holiday. At least those with kids. Most of the other business owners I know approach September as a ‘new school year’, even when it has nothing to do with business plan or financial years.

The summer break gives us a chance to refresh and escape the daily chaos that can surround us in our businesses. So, we approach September ready with our big intentions, hoping that daily chaos doesn’t catch us.

After loads of years in business I have learnt a few tactics to making that ‘new school year’ work better in my business:

  • Focus on one, maybe two maximum, big intentions to do something different. That could be reorganising the business, implementing a new computer system, recruiting new staff or launching a marketing campaign. In fact, just focus on one thing. You stand a better chance of succeeding;
  • Plan that intention with some detail: what would the result look like; what time, people or money do you need to make it happen; what are the main 3-4 progress steps to get the result?
  • Share your intention with a trusted group of business friends or supporters. Keep them updated with progress and seek their advice throughout. I think this is the single most important tactic to increase your chances of success. We do it all the time at the To Be Honest Mastermind (listen to the members here);
  • Seriously consider only looking 90 days ahead. That almost ties in with a school term allowing for half term and the Christmas parties period.

What other ‘return to work’ approaches do you use after summer holidays?

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