You’ve made it. You’re halfway through the 2015 year.
How do you feel about it?
Never-mind, don’t answer that.
Unless you’re the rare exception, most of us with businesses and a mountain of to-do’s on our list are feeling just a little behind. Like most of humanity, we’ve overestimated how much we are capable of doing in the amount of time allotted the 24/7 cycle, especially considering that we need to eat, sleep, and sometimes even take showers.
But now is not the time to fret regarding how far we think we should be, but rather to plan ahead to get to where we want to be by the years’ end.
To make this process easier for you, I made you a couple of simple, interactive worksheets.
These may seem overly simplistic, but trust me, if you follow this simple planning process it’s going to make the next 6 months of running your business SO MUCH EASIER.
First, you’re going to download and save the 6 Month Planning Calendar to your desktop.
- In the highlighted fields below each month, type in the things you know that will be happening within each of those months (whether you want them to or not.) This includes the family reunion in August, a week spent at your sister’s in December, the craft show you signed up for in November and so on.
- Next, type in the major things that you need to work on for your business in their appropriate months in order to just keep things running. I’m thinking of things like following up with your wholesale accounts in July, and setting up your holiday marketing calendar in September.
- Finally, put in a project or two you may not NEED to complete by the end of the year, but would really, really like to. This could be finishing the first draft of a book you’ve been wanting to write, or completing your spring jewelry collection.
Having your events and “to-do”s for the next 6 months forced onto a single page will (hopefully) keep you from over-booking yourself, and give you a realistic time-table of just when you need to get started on what in order to have a successful holiday season.
Keep this 6 month calendar saved to your desktop where you can open and look at it at the end and start of each new week. Use it to keep yourself on track, and tweak the contents within as necessary.
Next, download the Weekly Planner worksheet. This document you can fill out electronically, or print out to fill out by hand – whichever way helps you process your to-do’s better.
- Fill this sheet out at the end of every week for the upcoming week, and reference it every day during the week you are using it to make sure you are able to keep yourself on track.
- Assign a main priority to each day (you can of course use identical priorities across multiple days), that way you know whether to work on something when it pops up unexpectedly, or push it to a different day more suited to that day’s assigned priority. This will help you keep your focus and give needed attention to each of your priorities without leaving you feeling scatter-brained.
For example, your Monday priority couple be marketing, which may include tasks such as planning themes for your marketing calendar, writing e-mail campaign drafts, and creating social media graphics to be posted throughout the week. Or maybe on Wednesday your priority could be collection development, where you research, design, and create new products. You get to decide, and, as with the your 6 Month Planner, you get to tweak as you go along.
The combination of planning for the next 6 months and planning on a week-by-week basis will keep you focused on your overall goals, while also allowing you to provide yourself with the weekly baby-steps that will guide you in a much more manageable fashion to achieving those goals.
Good luck with your next 6 months!
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