Soon summer will be over and you’ll start planning your annual executive, council or organization retreat. You’ll analyze your business, organization or community and carefully put together a budget and a plan for 2019.
But, is planning the same way you did last year going to yield better results?
Yes, if you avoid these common mistakes:
- Too Much Optimism. No one wants to be negative. And unless self appointed to the role of ‘contrarian’ no employee, board member or council person wants that title. But, if you go through a planning process where none of your conversations dive into uncomfortable territory or produced thoughtful disagreement, then you’ve got problems. Inevitably there are some sacred cows holding you back. To be truly successful, both the good and the bad have to be on the table and everyone has to be empowered and prepared to state the obvious. No pain, no gain.
- Cruise Control. Like comfy pants that make you feel good or cruise control in your car, goal setting can default to what’s easy, reliable or comfortable. But, comfortable doesn’t get you better, bigger or bolder. This year it’s time to stretch. Set goals that you may not accomplish, but still make you look good for trying.
- Rephrase, Rearrange, Repeat. Your 2019 plan shouldn’t be an extension of your 2018 plan, which was an extension of your 2017 plan? When you’re planning, you should be able to look back at the plans from the last several years and see that your not stuck in the same spot. This can help the discussion as you can often see that while you may have fallen short of a goal last year, you’ve still grown.
- Your Budget is Not Your Plan. Do you need a plan? Yes. Do you need a budget? Absolutely. Is a budget a plan? Not even close. Budgets are based on a conservative picture of what could happen. And budgets can be inflexible. By contrast, plans shouldn’t be as conservative and they should be adaptable to changing conditions. Tracking a line item budget month to month doesn’t measure progress, it measures restraint.
Want to accelerate your growth next year? Contact us to facilitate your next company, organization or community retreat.