Sunday, September 18, 2011

Business Thought Process: The 4Q1E Way (Part 4)

Technologies and methodologies evolve and change, but solid foundations and principles tend to remain constant in business.

So with that in mind over the next few weeks, I'm gonna ask you 4 Questions. And give you 1 Exclamation that will hopefully get you thinking about the foundations and principles needed to create a business, solidify your current business, or enhance the speed of your growing business.

Question 1: Where are you now?
Question 2: What is next?
Question 3: What are your assets and resources?
Question 4: What do you do to get there?

Another way to put that is: "Whats your gameplan?"

Let's break it down. Wherever you are... you are. You've identified what's next for your business. And you have determined what your assets and resources are.

If the assets and resources you currently have will be sufficient to get you to "What's next" then you need a plan to get you there.

If you are lacking in resources, you should have identified what you need by now and your plan should first include a way to acquire those resources, whatever they may be.

I'm not going to give you a "sample gameplan" because that probably wouldn't work for you anyway. YOU need to come up with YOUR plan and it needs to be based on YOUR business and YOUR goals.

What I will do is remind you what Steven Covey said: "Begin with the end in mind."

Whatever your "end target" happens to be (whether it's a number of new customers or an amount of revenue being generated each month) is where you need to start.

Once you've identified your end target, put a deadline on it. When to you want to have that end result? Two years, 5 years, 10 months, next week? When? Now you need to be honest with yourself... is it going to be humanly possible to reach that target in that timeframe?

If your goal is $1 Million in sales by the end of the year and your are currently at $50K in sales it may or may not be possible to reach that target in that timeframe. I don't know. I don't know what your work ethic is and I don't know how much business there is available in your industry. Maybe it is possible, if it is that's awesome.

So you've identified a target, and you've set a deadline. Regardless of how far out that deadline is, you need to break it into measurable portions so you can see how well you are progressing toward that goal. Maybe you need a weekly status check, maybe you need a monthly progress report to yourself, maybe its a 10 year plan and a quarterly check up will be sufficient. You will have to decide what works best for you and your plan.

How ever you break it up and segment it out, make sure you write down your plan in your handwriting (not on your iPad or laptop). Put it on the dry erase board in your office or if you work from home get a couple pieces of poster board and write out your plan then tack it to the wall somewhere that you will see it every single day. Look at it. Read over it. Keep an eye on your progress. Make adjustments when necessary.

Never give up. Become like the single drop of water that eventually with continuous effort and unrelenting persistence carves a canyon in landscape of the earth.

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