Written By: Andy Ogg – Editor for Travel Professional NEWS
As 2018 approaches, we are faced with not only a new year but the opportunity to decide what this year brings to you, your business and your life. What does the new year hold for you? If you aren’t sure, it’s time to give it some thought and create your goals.
New Years seem to be categorized with a “New Years Resolution” but what if instead of making one goal, you made 10? What if you took the opportunity to turn 2018 into the year to not only grow your business, but also to refine and better it?
Let’s look into 8 steps to make 2018 your year to do just that, as well as to create objectives and attainable goals to ensure that your year isn’t lost to time, but maximized for greatness.
It’s hard to know where to start without knowing your objectives so create a Wish List of accomplishments and goals you wish to accomplish in the next year. Your list is going to be completely your own but here are a few ideas.
- Increase overall sales by 15%
- Add 10 new clients
- Education regarding my niche
- Build better relationships with my suppliers and partners
- Hire an assistant to relieve my time
- Manage my work / life balance better
- Set up business as LLC or Corporation
Whatever your Wish List holds, this is the first step to make sure that 2018 doesn’t slip away, but is maximized for great things!
Keeping this Wish List in front of you is key to it’s success. Pin it to your wall, put it on your white board or even set it as your desktop image. If you don’t actively see it, it will be 2019 before you know it and your Wish List may have gone untouched.
Plan of Action
You’ve got your ideas written down, now how do you make them happen? First off, give it some thought. Reflect on your past experiences and learn from them. In that reflection, the steps or plan to accomplish your Wish List may present itself. Whether it’s increasing sales or simply finding a better work / life balance, spend time in crafting a well thought out plan on how to execute your goals through the upcoming year. I suggest creating at least 3 steps needed for each item on your Wish List, breaking the tasks down to more manageable ones can be the difference between done and overwhelmed.
Play Chess, Not Checkers
Business isn’t a lateral movement and as you all know, it grows and slows. It has it’s own life and heartbeat if you will, so how do you make the strategic moves to maximize your efforts and not waste them?
Making calculated risks and movements is one of the best ways to handle these new additions to your business. If you are trying to increase your client base, are you feasibly able to handle more business at this time or are you already working 50 + hours a week? In order to build, we need a foundation so make sure your foundation is there, solid and ready for the next steps of your business.
Checkers is a game of small accomplishments but chess is a game of strategy. Look at your year and your goals as a perfectly set up chess board, the next move is yours so make sure it counts. With every sacrifice and every effort, do your best to ensure that you are headed to the ultimate goal, not a small accomplishment.
Setbacks and Obstacles
With every goal comes it’s own challenges and there are several ways to deal with each of those. If one of your Wish List goals is to rebrand your company, the design process of a new logo and identity can be one of the most challenging portions, so start with your vision and follow it through to reality. It may not be the first designer you use, it may be the 10th and that is ok. There is nothing wrong with shopping for what you want and staying true to your goals.
When all hope is about to be lost and nothing seems to be going right, that is just about the time the world changes so hold tight and keep pushing forward to accomplish your goals, no matter what the challenge
Half Way Check Up
In June of 2018, set aside a day for yourself and spend that day reviewing your progress. Where are you in terms of completing your goals? What is holding you back from finishing the project or goal? Spend the day and really look into where you are in your progress. In doing so, you won’t only reinvigorate your passion for completing these exciting goals but you’ll also discover some things about yourself, whether it’s good or bad.
Maybe your Wish List held unattainable goals for 2018 or maybe your business began to boom and everything else had to take a backseat. Whatever your situation, spend the day and relook at your Wish List and decide what goals are still important and which ones are not. I would bet that many of you reading this will already have completed some of your Wish List items and if you find yourself in that situation, spend the allocated day enjoying the fruits of your labor!
When the Road Deviates
Some goals on your Wish List may not be going as planned, no matter how focused, prepared and driven you’ve been. Life happens and occasionally, an idea just can’t become reality at that specific time. If you find yourself frustrated or discouraged with a particular goal, I suggest you re-examine the goal and see why that may be happening.
If you goal was to hire an assistant or new employee to help lessen your work load and you have not been able to successfully find the right person, maybe you need to shake it up and try another option like advertising the position online or using a staffing service. Many times, finding the right employee isn’t a walk in the park so don’t let the process defeat your vision. Additionally, look at the facts and make sure that your expectations are realistic. If you are looking for Superman but only offering $10 an hour, you may not find much luck.
The Check Off
I may be speaking for myself but there is nothing quite like crossing off a goal when it’s completed. Knowing the effort, work and time you’ve invested and feeling that sense of accomplishment is one fantastic feeling isn’t it? When you see your Wish List dwindle, not only will you feel fantastic about your accomplishments but your business will feel, look and run better. If you had a sales goal for 2018 and accomplished it, make sure to note your ability and reward yourself with whatever makes you smile.
Task completion in a world where many of us wear all of the hats of a business is one of the most rewarding things ever so don’t hesitate to show yourself gratuity for your hard work, dedication and completion!
Check. Check. Check. Now What?
If you were able to turn your Wish List into actually, way to go! There is nothing like making your dreams into reality! Now it’s time to look forward to the next step of your business and make sure that the goals you’ve hit are not only helping your business but are an overall positive for you, your life and business.
Growing a business, whether it’s in sales, employees or in clients is a lot of work and isn’t something to be overlooked. If you have succeeded in your goals for 2018, don’t stop there. Start your next Wish List and get to work. “If you’re not growing, your dying,” is one of my favorite sayings and the success and accomplishments from growth can sometimes be the most rewarding parts of running your own business.
Thank you for your time in this issue of Travel Professional NEWS and I hope that you not only make your Wish List but go to work on checking it off for 2018!