2017 Planning, Let's Go!

Working at advertising agencies gives you a great framework for everything that annual "Planning" means. Every year we would meet at a fancy conference room with the client and define the strategy, brainstorm ideas of things we could do and establish high-level project plans of how they would get done. Then, we would meet up again quarterly for new ideas, checking in on our goals and progress, and reassessing the strategy. And there were Strategy, Accounts, Creatives and Media people in the room. 

After two years of working with entrepreneurs, I've seen how successful even a smaller version of that can be for us. 

The new year is such a great opportunity to step back and be more strategic about what you want to do and how you're doing it. It can be a perfect time to set goals and hold yourself accountable. 

Before the end of the year, take at least a couple of hours and ask yourself the following questions: 

  • What do you want to accomplish as a business in 2017?Maybe it's something that you weren't ready for before, but are ready now.
  • How much money do you want to make in 2017? Be bold. I know it can be scary, but setting the intention is the first step!
  • What kind of people do you want to work with/ as customers next year? If you want this to change at all, think about how and brainstorm how you can reach more of the people you want.
  • What did you love doing this year? Brainstorm ways of bringing more of this into your life - more of the things that made you feel like "I'm getting paid for this? Yes!"
  • What did you hate this year? Is it necessary? If you can phase it out, do it. If you can't, can you delegate it?
  • Who do you want to partner with? Find local entrepreneurs or businesses with aligned values and brainstorm ways to support each other next year. 
  • How can you feel energized, carefree and in balance next year? Work in self-care and things that make you feel yummy as you plan your year, whether it's pilates, coffee dates, naps or ice cream.

Then, after you've got everything down - sketch out your year, divide it up into four parts and set goals and deadlines for everything you've established for the year and by quarter. If you find a friend you can trust to do this with, it can be way more fun and you get feedback! 

Doing this for myself last year is what led me to let go of the agency model and see that I wanted to work with women entrepreneurs hosting workshops and strategy sessions. So yeah, the insights that can come from this are pretty amazing and huge!

For me, I knew I was on the right track because this whole process - rather than stressing me out, was actually really fun and exciting. I couldn't wait to grab that Sharpie giant post it and start letting it all out.  


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