How do you feel about planning for the future right now?
As we work our way through this period of ‘you can go to work if you can go to work, but if you can’t then don’t’, it may feel it’s nigh impossible to plan for the future.
There are so many what-ifs, it can be hard to think about what decisions to make.
What if the schools go back in June? What if they don’t open until September?
What if we can’t run any in-person events until 2021? What if it turns out that we can run one earlier?
What if I can’t get a haircut until July? What if I pretend my webcam is broken until then?
The truth is that, when it comes to business planning, there is very little in our control, even in times before lockdown. We’ve been forced to withdraw to our homes and change the way we live and work. And now we are slowly working out how we emerge from this.
We may not know exactly how life and business are going to operate going forward, but did we really have that much control over what happened before all this happened?
There’s a great quote from Eisenhower that I use in my training sessions.
“I have always found plans to be useless, but planning to be indispensable.”
Because you have so little control over what really goes on inside and outside of your business, the plan you create has to evolve as you implement. And sometimes has to change completely to take into account of external factors such as bad health, a piece of tech that breaks or losing a key member of your team, through to the extremes of pandemics and forced lockdowns. All of which happens out of our control.
We may think we are in control.
But we aren’t really.
Life fluidly moves in and around us, sometimes slow, sometimes fast. It’s rare that anything stays the same for any length of time.
So does this mean we simply leave our business to chance and never plan?
I don’t agree with Eisenhower that plans are useless, but I do agree that it is the planning that is indispensable because it forces you to do the thinking needed to grow your business.
Planning forces you to make decisions.
Just think how much mental energy you use when you are feeling indecisive, even about little things such as what to wear and what to have for lunch each day. It can be exhausting!
Planning forces you to be considered; to step up and dig deep into what you stand for and what it is you truly want to accomplish.
Planning forces you to be connected with your current customers, your marketplace and your numbers, which in turn keeps your emotions grounded, particularly in times of uncertainty.
So although many of you may love to create, to be open to opportunities and don’t like being hemmed into targets or strict project management deadlines, don’t let the current uncertainty of our rules and boundaries for how we ‘go back to work’ let you drift from month to month.
Planning can happen, and needs to happen, no matter how much uncertainty we have in our lives.
And I share this with you today because it’s the day our Momentum members will be showing up and doing their 90 Day Plans.
I’m connecting into the energy that I want to deliver for our morning session that will have them coming away with clarity on how to deliver their sales targets and how exactly they are going to implement the projects that will ensure their long term growth.
That’s what I’m feeling into as I prepare for today’s session and it’s what I believe is important for all of us as we emerge from lockdown together with a plan for a future.
Until next time, do less, be more and play bigger.
About the author
Karen Skidmore is a midlife leadership & business coach for entrepreneurs scaling their purpose & profit. Business Books Awards finalist 2020 & podcaster, Karen uniquely combines the being-ness and doing-ness of business to help you grow, without burning out.
The first step in discovering the True Profit in your business is to take the True Profit Test.