“Life is what happens while you’re busy making plans”
Allen Saunders, John Lennon and others
This little cartoon often pops up on social networks (it’s creator is never mentioned but it looks like it might have originated at Dog House Diaries – give them a like).
The implication is that there’s not much point in making plans because real life will always get in the way.
Planning is more useful than the plan
To paraphrase Eisenhower, when you’ve made a plan you can probably throw it away because its main use is the process of planning – which should include anticipating obstacles and figuring a way to get round, through, over or under them. The real benefit of a plan is to decide on your goal or outcome and the steps you need to take to get there.
A goal without a plan is just a wish or a dream.
For example …
Maisie’s goal is to increase what she earns from her business by 100% in the next 12 months.
Making the plan of how to get from here to there meant Maisie had to examine all her options which included putting up prices, increasing margins, increasing volume of orders, getting new customers, selling more to existing customers, improving processes and systems, employing people, and outsourcing to mention a few.
The plan she’s created is a result of weighing up all these options and a lot more things. If things go according to her plan, that’s great, but if they don’t, she’s got other ways to reach her goal.
Without going through the process of planning, the chances of her increasing her earnings are slim, to say the least. She’s more likely to just keep doing what she’s doing and hoping that things will change.
And we all know what that means ……
Start the planning process by working back from where you want to be to where you are now, then break it down into small action plans for every month and every day. This will also help you to make decisions quicker as you’ll always be able to ask “Will this take me closer to my goal, or further away?”
If you’re planning to make changes in your life or your business contact me for more information on how to make it easy!