A lot of business owners end up winging it. They may have set some goals at the beginning of the year, but as the year goes on, their plans haven’t been looked at or adjusted in months, and those goals are long forgotten.
You may be tempted to think that it’s no big deal, you’re doing just fine winging it. And you can certainly be successful even if you don’t plan. But ask yourself this…”Could I have done even better if I’d had a more thought-out plan of attack?” I’m betting the answer is yes.
A lack of a plan can cost you, not just monetarily, but also in terms of frustration and wasted time.
Without clear direction, both you and your team can waste time on activities that aren’t getting you any closer to your goals. Having a plan allows you to focus your time on what matter most, and helps keep your team from drifting into non-value-added tasks.
When you plan, you think through how you’re going to spend your money, and what resources you really need. Without one, you may throw money at things (salaries, software, products, etc.) that aren’t providing a significant return on investment.
As you grow, you need to plan for increased expenses to keep up with demand. If you indiscriminately spend to keep up with the growth, you may find yourself in a financial hole. Good planning will help you prepare to cover these expenses.
Some of you may be thinking, “Why bother having a plan when things never go according to plan?” It’s true that any plan you make will most likely not go perfectly; in fact, you can pretty much guarantee that it won’t. But if you do your planning right, you’ll be thinking ahead about potential obstacles and you’ll have a head start on dealing with them, saving you some of the stress.
When you take the time to plan, you start envisioning the future and considering potential challenges you may face. This gives you a chance to start thinking about contingencies you may not have considered before, allowing you to handle difficult situations better.
While it’s impossible to account for every single challenge that may come up, in your plan you can factor in some buffers to cover for the unexpected. Doing so will help minimize the stress of the unpredictable.
If you’re new to planning or need a push to plan on a regular basis (every quarter is ideal so you can make adjustments), join us for our next GrowthCLUB Business Planning Workshop. We’ll walk you through the process to create a step-by-step plan for your next quarter of success.
Author: Mark McNulty, Business Coach in Louisville, KY