Mid-Year Planning Tips for Entrepreneurs
WOW!!! Half of the year has just passed in a blink of an eye!
So what have I been doing in the past six months? What have I achieved so far? Was I able to knock out 50% of my goals?
I’m sure most of you share with me this feeling of accomplishment, yet not being fully satisfied of how productive you have been in the first half of the year.
Let me share to you how I am currently doing my midyear planning, and hope that these tips may help you be more productive in the next six months of 2013!
- Schedule a Planning Retreat – The ideal Mid-Year planning retreat for me is going out of town for two full days all by myself so I can focus on my personal planning. I know that this can be a luxury for most people because of the tight schedule of an Entrepreneur. I guess what’s important here is dedicating a significant amount of time outside of your regular daily routing to do your six-month planning session. Whether it be 2 full days or 8 full hours outside of your regular work day routine, what’s important is you dedicte time just for planning. Be creative if the 2-day out of town won’t work for you. Like in my case, since I will be going to Baguio City next week for a corporate training session with a new client, I will just take that opportunity to extend my stay for another day after the training so I can do my planning session.
- Revisit your Purpose Statement – Your purpose statement is your constant reminder why you are setting goals and planning in the first place. So make sure that you review your purpose statement. See how your activities and achievements in the past six months have been in tune with your purpose statement and what adjustments do you need to do to make sure that you will always be in alignment to your purpose statement in the second half of the year. If you are still unsure how to write your purpose statement, you can check out mine here.
- Audit Your Achievements – Your basis for your audit will of course be your plan when you started this year. Acknowledge your achievements and give yourself a tap on the shoulder for a job well done. Create a list with two columns. On the left side, write down your achievement. While on the right side, list down all the things that you should have accomplished but failed to do so regardless of the reason. When you are done, put that list in front of you and stare at it for a couple of minutes. This should give your a visual idea of how have you been effective in the first half of the year. Savour the feeling of accomplishment. But at the same time, feel the sense of urgency in completing the important stuff that you could have accomplished.
- Use the 3W Evaluation Approach – This approach is actually quite simple. Just ask yourself these three questions:
What didn’t work?
What could work better?
These are simple questions if sincerely answered could create a lot of awareness and realizations on how well we have performed in the past six months and what kind of improvements should be applied in following six months.
- Mindmap Everthing – I’m sure that by now you have already realized that doing a mid year planning is difficult if you don’t have any written plan at the start of the year. A plan will never be a plan if you don’t write it down. So document it! And what has worked for me is to MindMap this plan. Checklists and spreadsheets in a thing of the past when it comes to organized planning. It may take some learning curve to be used to the discipline of MindMapping. But once you get used to it, it will surely be a part of your regular routine from planning your next blog post, down to putting up your weekly grocery list.
- Reward Yourself – And lastly, reward yourself for all the milestones you have accomplished in the first half of this year. Buy a new gadget for yourself, watch a movie, treat yourself with your favorite comfort food, pamper yourself with a massage… whatever it is, just make sure to remind yourself that you did a good job and that your deserve the compliment. And of course, don’t forget to make the next six months more exciting by identifying how will you reward yourself for whatever you will be accomplishing by the end of this year.
Planning is a significant activity for every Entrepreneur. But planning is of course will be in vain without significant ACTION. Our business is very much like a canoe, where “planning” is rowing on the left side while “taking action” is rowing on the right. Significant effort should be done on both sides. Otherwise, our business will just go in circles.
So go ahead plan like crazy. Use this simple guide to put some structure to it. Then spend the next six months of this year with a lot of hard work, love and passion for what you do, and help other people along the way.
Happy Mid-Year Planning everyone!