Sitting at 30,000’ all I could see were white clouds reaching out to the horizon as the sun set on our westward flight back to Vancouver. The perspective was completely different as I contemplated what my dreams are for 2016. It was a perfect place, isolated in my seat while surrounded by the other passengers, to be able to contemplate anything for myself and my career in 2016.
What do you do to create the dreams for your business? What environment do you need to realize powerful new visions that will take your business to the next level?
Many entrepreneurs either do little or no planning for the upcoming year. Or they take what they did this year and plan to do a little bit better next year. Yet almost every entrepreneur started their business with a dream to change the world. The challenge is get back into that mode where new dreams are possible.
Fortunately, there are proven ways to create new dreams. Here are my suggestions:
- If you have grown your business and hired people around you, you are no longer the single expert on what is possible. Dream with your senior management team.
- Get out of the office. Allocate time and space to create your strategic plan. For high performing companies, this requires at least two days for annual planning and one day per quarter. Off site. Together. Put it in your calendar for the year now.
- Start with the vision of what your business will look like in three years. What markets must you be in? How much of those markets will you need to be successful? What key 3-4 initiatives must happen to make that vision come true.
- What are the three measurable goals you must accomplish in 2016? How will you and all of your staff know that you have achieved your goals. Improving customer retention is not a goal. Improving customer retention from 85% to 90% is.
- Having decided on your key goals for 2016, what will be the 3-4 goals for the first quarter? What key data measure do you need to improve every single day in order to achieve your first quarter goals?
I have gone through this planning process in my own and other companies. Every time, it has been a struggle to book and commit to the people, time, and place, yet each time the resulting plan was at least 100% better than what could have been come up with in a morning around the board room table. If you want better results, new dreams, and a high performing business give this a try.
What’s your dream for 2016?