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Are You Preparing for Success in 2022?

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail” ~ Benjamin Franklin


As the year is winding down and the pressure is on to meet your fourth quarter and year end goals, remember to schedule your 2022 annual business planning session.


“What is that?” you ask, and “What does it look like?” Great questions.


What is the Annual Business Plan?

Your annual business planning session is a meeting for owners (and key team members) once per year, usually near the end of your fiscal year, to:

  1. Review where the company has been;

  2. Determine where it is going; and

  3. Build the plan to get there

It can be useful to have a condensed version as a check in, at the end of Q2 or anytime where things have substantially changed, for good or bad, and a course correction may be needed. The purpose of this interim meeting is to check:

  • Are you on track?

  • Are you meeting targets?

  • Has anything changed significantly that alters the plan? Think Covid or maybe you secured big jobs that changes the growth plan.

  • Does the plan need revising?

The annual plan gives you the opportunity to see what’s working well in your business, what’s not working well and what needs to change, to grow. Unless you are intentional about taking the time do go through your business in this manner, it will seem you never have time to do a complete job. You will partially think about one piece at a time and only when it’s necessary, which usually means there’s no time for a thorough review and you’re responding to yet, another emergency.


What Does it Look Like?

The annual plan provides the blueprint or a road map for owners and employees to help keep you focused on priorities and to direct decisions about your next steps to move toward your goals. The annual plan also:

  • Prepares you for the beginning of the new fiscal year

  • Sets goals (big and small), subgoals and the milestones that connect the smaller goals to the bigger goals

  • Sets a vision, direction & focus for the coming year

  • Creates the link between the mission and daily operations

  • Reinforces intention in your operations

  • Builds excitement and a sense of urgency for the coming year

  • Provides clarity and understanding

Depending on the size of your organization and how many people you have on your team to include in the meeting, will be whether one day is adequate to cover all the content or if it needs to be done over two days. In a two day session, day one could be for review and looking back and day two for looking ahead.


In addition, the annual plan requires focussed attention with limited interruptions, it is recommended to reserve an off-site space to hold the meeting. This will limit interruptions, especially when you make sure the phones are all forwarded to your office.


To ensure you have a successful day, you will want to show up prepared with the following documents (a set for each attendee):

  • Profit & loss statements by month

  • Profit & loss for the year

  • Current operating budget

  • Copy of mission

  • Copy of vision

  • List of core value

  • Organizational structure

The annual review is a good time to revisit your mission, vision and core values to make sure that they are still relevant to your operations or if they need updating. You will also review your budget and determine a new one based on the goals established and your review of the previous year.


In addition to the documents listed above, you will also want to make sure you have some other essentials with you, including (and not limited to):

  • Multi coloured markers

  • Pens/pencils

  • Post-it Notes

  • Easel pad paper (and easel if your venue does not provide one)

  • Note pads

  • Snacks on hand (remember cups/cutlery/bowls/plates etc. if needed)

  • Lunch arranged (for pick-up or delivery)

  • Water

The annual plan is a powerful tool for all business owners to use to advance their company. Without it we are simply flying by the seat of our pants, you can liken it to getting in your car and start driving with no destination in mind. As you can imagine, you can wander in many directions just to return home having accomplished nothing except wasting a lot of gas.


This just touches on some of the important elements of the annual business plan session. If the idea of holding a session with your team sounds like something you are ready to implement and you’re not sure where to start, get in touch to schedule your free consultation by filling out our online needs assessment today at www.ThriveHQ.ca. Because there is a better way.


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