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  • Donna Lim

My Annual Planning & Goal Setting Process

It’s that time of year when I start to reflect on what we’ve accomplished this year and how far we are from our goals.  I created and set most of our 2020 goals up last fall long before the Covid pandemic.  Like most of you, I have had to adjust my goals to fit according to what is happening.  However, I will not let that deter me from my ritual of brainstorming and dreaming up what I’d like to accomplish next year.  I know for some of you September is a busy month.  School is starting and kids are settling back down.  I know some of you have a new normal to deal with on the kid/school front.  However, I still want to encourage you to take a few moments out and start the process.  Our new normal is here to stay for awhile and we still have businesses that we want to thrive – that takes planning.  

I thought I would share with you my process.  I’m hoping you can get some ideas and motivation from it.  OH… by the way, I’d love to hear about your process.  Maybe I’ll get some ideas from you.

First, I get my business plan out and review it. I wrote a 5-year plan out in 2018.  If you haven’t done this very important step, I encourage you to take the time.  It grounds me and helps me keep on track.  A lot can happen in 5 years, so my plan is to revise it next year and extend it out to another 5-year plan.  I took a course in business planning, but I know there are a lot of templates out there … just google it. 

Next, I start to look at the goals I set for this year and where I am in obtaining those goals.  As you can imagine, this year looks a bit off since I didn’t plan for a pandemic.  It’s ok.  I’m not going to beat myself up over it since it’s completely out of my control.  Give yourself a little grace here as there is a lot of businesses in the same situation.  

Now that I’ve refreshed my memory on the ultimate goals of the business reviewing the business plan and looking at where I am this year, I can start brainstorming what my goals should be for 2021.  Because we don’t know when the pandemic will be over and we don’t know where our economy is going, I am thinking of doing a High, Medium, Low approach for my 2021 goals.  

Profit – What do I want my profit line to say at the end of the year?  YES, you should be planning your profit.  

Income goals – What did I predict the revenue was going to be for 2021?  Is it obtainable?  Do I need to adjust – Up/Down?  How many clients do I need to acquire to reach my income goal?  What’s my package offering mix?  

Cost of Good Sold – Do I have enough team members to accomplish my goals?  At what point will I need to hire?  Do I have the funds in my payroll account to hire another person? What will it take to get comfortable with my hiring decision?  For me, the cost of QuickBooks subscriptions and other apps that I might be paying for a client comes into play.  What will be the cost of subscriptions if I get to my client acquisition goals?

Expenses – What expense will rise because of the added work?  Is there any expenses I need to eliminate?  Am I running lean and mean or flabby and flimsy?  

Now that I have my thoughts in order about the financial goals of the company, it’s time to set some goals around other aspects of the company.  I’ll write about that next time.  


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