New year, new you. How many times have we heard that? However, there is something important to learn from this expression. A new year should create new opportunities. The question is, will everything fall into place by itself? Probably not…
“People don’t plan to fail. They fail to plan.”
A lot of independent research shows that those who work with a written plan are significantly more successful than those who don’t.
Here are five short points with a few simple tips on how to work on your plan:
1. Make sure your plan is your toolbox for your success
Whether it’s your personal plan, the department plan or the company plan, the basic idea of a plan is that it follows a logical process and serves as a tool for your work. Whether planning business operations or personal development, start by picturing the desired outcome in general, and then break that picture down into a few sub-goals. You’re more likely to accomplish goals that you develop yourself alongside your coach – if you don’t have a coach or mentor, now is the time to get one, as it’s harder to coach yourself. When it comes to personal development, it helps to be clear about the benefits you get when you reach your goals. You should also identify any obstacles you might find along the way and how you can avoid them with the help of smart actions if needed. What support do you need for the plan to work? What resources? Then list the actions you need to perform to overcome obstacles and reach your goals.
2. Plans are perishable goods – manage your plan with that in mind
It’s important to view your plan as your assistant and a living document that you should develop and update at appropriate intervals. All plans are up to date and based on your current situation and the future that we can predict today. By tomorrow everything may have changed, but that doesn’t make a good plan any less valuable. A plan can always be revised and definitely should be at regular intervals. If you don’t have a plan, you can’t control your development yourself, someone else is in control.
3. Your plan creates positive energy – it’s a strong, focused power source!
A good plan creates direction, shows you the next step on the road and helps you focus on your future goals. A range of independent research shows that those who work with a written plan are significantly more successful than those who don’t. In addition, working according to a plan that you have largely developed yourself compared to a plan that somebody else has developed for you gives you greater inner satisfaction.
4. Set goals!
Remember that your plan is your guide to achieving your goals and it’s important to define your goals according to applicable rules -for example, creating measurable goals. Written goals are important! Your plan should function as an energy source that gives you a substantial boost and moves you forward – at your own pace and according to your plan of action and your chosen conditions, but always working towards your goals. At the same time, it’s important that your plans are rooted in reality. They should be achievable but not obvious. It’s important that your plan is tailored to you and your work, but at the same time has a focus and goals that are in line with the overall business objectives.
5. Invest in structured time for reflection and learning
Last but not least, build a good follow-up model with time for reflecting on and summarising your progress at appropriate intervals. Make sure you have a learning process built into the plan, and remember that the plan is only worth as much as the time you invest in it.