“If you’re climbing the ladder of life, you go rung by rung, one step at a time. Don’t look too far up, set your goals high but take one step at a time. Sometimes you don’t think you’re progressing until you step back and see how high you’ve really gone.” ~ Donny Osmond
Can you believe 2008 is almost at an end?  Next week I will be getting down to really do some business planning for 2009.  I won’t be making a lot of changes but definitely doing some tweaking to fine tune some of my systems, marketing and profitability.  I thought I would share the process I use to begin the planning.  As solopreneurs we must be as diligent about running our business like a business as any other business owner.
Here are my tools: Ipod, a couple of hundred index cards(I like the post it notes cards), nice pen, cork board, last year’s plan.  The Ipod is to play motivational music or books to keep me energized while I work through this process.
I begin by identifying what my business goals are for 2009.  Each goal goes on a separate index card.  Those goals are placed across the top of the cork board.  Now I look at last year’s goals and if any of them are the same (and there is always a couple—like increasing revenues by 30%) I evaluate the strategies and progress made.  If those strategies are working great I will continue to use them.  However, if I am not getting the results I really want then I look at each action within that strategy to see what needs to be changed or eliminated.
My next step is I look at each one of my goals and decide what strategies I will use to accomplish them. Each strategy goes on a separate card.  Then for each strategy I must breakdown the action steps necessary to make that strategy effective.  And yes each action also goes on a separate card.  Let’s take for example I would like to add 5000 people this year into my personal network.  One of my strategies will be to use twitter to develop new relationships.  However, I need to have specific actions I am going to take because otherwise I simply get sucked into the addiction of Twitter.
I find that the beauty of my system is that it is very visual, easy for me to monitor my success rate, and to transfer all of the action steps to my daily calendar.  The best part is when necessary I can remove or change a specific action based on the feedback I am getting from the marketplace.  It helps to keep me accountable all year long, different from when I created a document and filed it away when I was complete.  Sometimes only to pull that plan back out 6 or 12 months later to find I had not completed nearly what I had planned to.
2009 Happy planning, if I can be of any help please reach out.  If you believe and plan to have a profitable 2009 and take the right action you will succeed.
A resource that might be helpful as you plan is a book that was recommended today.  I have not read it myself yet but I intend to.  Lasting Contribution: How to Think, Plan, and Act to Accomplish Meaningful Work by Tad Waddington
One more resource I would highly recommend to help you grow your profits in 2009 is my Growth Coaching Program.  I would love to discuss this program with you, simply shoot me an email or find me on twitter @donnaamos.
Wishing you and your family a fabulous holiday and prosperous 2009.
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” ~ Albert Einstein   —
I choose the later, how about you?

About the Author: Donna Amos

I believe you can achieve anything you truly want to achieve. “It might sound trite, but time and time again, I’ve seen it happen with my clients. They overcome the fear of exposing themselves to the possibility of failure to creating profitable exciting businesses. My clients do great work, and sometimes it only takes someone else believing in them to give them the confidence to step out and take the chance.”