Have a long-term focus
Running a busy business can leave you focused only on the short term.
Short term projects ... customers ... plans ... goals ...
Always looking to the next thing. Never with an eye on the future.
This leaves you and your business exposed to change.
But what happens ...
when the next project you had scheduled drops out?
if you want to grow the business?
you want to manage the business but not have to get on the tools?
It's difficult to know what to do without the insight and detail you gain from a long term plan. A plan that directs you towards your pre-defined objective.
To help, Business Buddies has come up with seven tips that will help you better plan for the long-term:
Define what it is you want to achieve. What is the end-goal i.e. at what point can you stop and say you've reached your original business objective.
Break your long term goal down into small measurable goals. When you have a large goal you are working on, breaking it down into small bite-size chunks as this will help you stay consistent.
Focus on the process not results. Sometimes when building towards the future, quick wins aren't easy to come by. But by building a set of processes to take you to your objective, in the end, you will win.
Focus on little wins. Turning a business into a success is slow arduous work and at times it's the little victories that indicate when you are moving in the right direction.
Make sure your expectations are realistic. Stating a business objective of turning over a billion pounds in five years as perhaps a stretch too far. So make sure your goals are in the realms of possibility. You may not always succeed, but it's a worse feeling setting a business goal and getting nowhere to achieving it.
Be consistent. Try to do something every day towards meeting your goal. Little by little. Continually deviating off your plan will mean it taking longer to reach your objective. So make little movements forward each day, a change here, a saving there.
Seek accountability. This means share your plan with others - a business partner, a family member, an investor, or trusted worker. This will ensure there are others helping you consciously drive towards the objective of your plan.
A plan also helps you address what if scenarios.
What are the potential what if scenarios you may come up against as you move towards your objective.
What are the potential pitfalls and what will you then do if any occur?
A long-term plan provides the detail to direct you to where you need to go. And detail of what to do to overcome any barriers you might face.
In summary, there are two important roles long-term planning play:
It gives you something to reach for. A ship is easier to steer when the captain has somewhere to take it.
It helps direct your next action when you come up against barriers to achieving your long-term objective.
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