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Plan for Growth in 2019

By Drue Lawlor
Director of Coaching at Gail Doby Coaching & Consulting
Photo Credit: @bakerbroductions

“If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.” ~Lucius Annaeus Seneca

As we reach the end of 2018, you, along with your team, should be evaluating the past year in order to plan for 2019. One suggestion is to use PIE – an acronym in strategic planning terms. First, what will you Preserve – and why (the why is key to document to later remember why you made this decision). Next what will you Improve and why and what will you do to make those improvements. Finally, what will you Eliminate and why.

Once you have evaluated 2018, it is time for you and your team to focus on planning your growth in 2019. An effective way to approach this is to establish an annual event – planning an offsite team meeting in early January. Have your team participate in the planning for this meeting and be sure to make it fun as well as productive.

As a group, define the “culture” of the firm and identify what values are important to you and to your team members. You might encourage your team to help create exercises for this gathering that will help identify the firm’s values and culture. Use this event to review the PIE we just mentioned – where the company has been – and share where you envision the company heading.

As you address the growth you would like to achieve in 2019, brainstorm with your team to define and set goals that are realistic but also stretch your team to grow.

Once you have identified your goals (and include 3-5 year goals as well as those for 2019), then develop the tactics to help you accomplish them, keeping in mind the cost involved.

Don’t forget the importance of knowing exactly what to track, what it will mean for your business and how to make changes to reach those goals. As you plan for growth in 2019 evaluate if you and your team are just busy or productive. Before you decide to add another member to the team evaluate the current job descriptions, processes and how everyone manages their time – starting with you!

An article in Inc. defined the difference between being busy and being productive. Below are 3 quotes that I feel are key to consider if you are serious about growth.

“Busy people jump at every assignment. Productive people know the difference between ‘urgent’ and ‘important’.” What changes in time management can you make in 2019 so that every member of the team is more productive?

“Busy people are always distracted. Productive people create a system.” Do you have necessary processes and systems in place to become more productive?

“Busy people multitask. Productive people focus.” As you plan for 2019, make sure to create an environment for each team member to be able to focus. This helps to avoid mistakes – and mistakes cost money!

Finally – be sure that your firm stays focused on activities that actually make money.

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