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Want to Accomplish Something Great? Here’s How to Plan It

Every great plan needs a … well, plan.

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I WORK WITH PEOPLE every week on formulating a plan. It could be to grow a business, coach a staff, learn to let go, plan a succession, transition a work life, or even exit a business. Whatever your challenge, there is a tried-and-true formula to follow in developing a plan and executing on it. Here are the steps to create your plan:

  • Start with Why: Simon Sinek has written a whole book on it. It starts with your purpose, cause, or belief. It helps you identify WHY you do WHAT you do the WAY you do it. Once you know your Why, you can proceed to your What, and then your How.
  • Define your What: You have to clarify what you want to happen before you can identify the way to get there. Often, simply defining the end game – the results of what you want to see – is liberating and sets you on the road to success.
  • Do your Research: This takes some time, and some work. You must consider all your options, where the opportunities lie, and all the ramifications of any direction you set. You can’t possibly know it all unless you do your homework, and even then you will only know in part. Understand the importance of this step.
  • Deal with your possible Fears or Anxiety: Fear is the number one reason we fail to take action we know we should take. The fear of failure is debilitating and often cripples our ability to move forward. Don’t let fear get in the way of accomplishing what you must do.
  • Establish a clear Target: Once you know your why and your what, do you research, and eliminate any fear or anxiety. This will help you get crystal clear on your goal. This then allows you to formulate a strategy to meet your goal and obtain the results you seek.
  • Clarify your How: What resources do you need to move forward? Are they financial, human or technological? What has to change in your thinking, planning, or general operations in order to establish how you are going to take next steps. Identifying how you are going to achieve your goal is vital.
  • Set Realistic Deadlines: Goals must always be clearly defined and measurable. The only way to do this is to set a reasoned deadline or series of deadlines, and work backward from them. Setting deadlines is the key to getting things done. If you don’t have a timeline with clear deadlines, you won’t achieve your goals.
  • Expect Challenges: No matter what course of action you set, there will always be barriers, hurdles, and roadblocks in your way. Don’t be surprised by them. Expect and embrace them because this will help you overcome them.
  • Get Help if you need it: No one gets to where they want to go alone. We all need help along the way. Seek wise counsel to help with your planning and with the all-important execution of your plan. Both the opportunity and the challenge are there. Meet them!

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When the Kids Have Their Own Careers, Wilkerson Can Help You to Retire

Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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