Personal planning is an underrated essential in business

Personal planning is an underrated essential in business

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Utilising personal planning methods within your business will help you to build out your diaries for success with a laser focus on your priorities.

It's an easy-to-use system that enables you to get more done every day by focusing on the critical tasks each week, month, quarter and year so that nothing slips through the cracks as essential deadlines approach.

Planning is a critical component of success in any industry. It can help you identify what needs to be done now and what should be done later on down the line. It also helps with long-term goals by giving you an idea of where you want yourself, the company or the department to go.

With this simple tool, we can all be successful - no matter how busy we are.

How Do I Make a Personal Plan?

The first step in creating a personal plan is deciding on what kind of person you want to be. What do you value most? What are your strengths? How can these things help guide the decisions that will shape your future?

Once you know this, it becomes much easier to create goals that will lead towards success. Here is a simple checklist you can follow that enables you to create a personal plan that you will stick to:

  • Start with a brainstorming session: Break down your role into components, including every individual and department you manage or have a touchpoint with. This will allow you to create objectives specific to different departments.
  • Create a manageable list of goals: If you create a personal plan that is hundreds of pages long, you are unlikely to use it effectively (it is more likely you will ignore it completely). Prioritising your list of tasks and objectives will allow you to put your energy into the activities more likely to result in personal and business success. The least important tasks and goals may not be necessary or could be delegated.
  • Set realistic goals: It would be nice if everyone could be a CEO, but the reality is only the very select few are going to make it to the very top. This does not mean you should sell yourself short, instead set goals and objectives you know are realistic - no matter how much work they may require. Setting unreasonable expectations is only going to lead to frustration and disappointment. You can always revisit these goals and objectives down the track and adjust your business plan as required.
  • Set realistic deadlines: Many projects will have defined deadlines that are easy to document. When you are choosing a timeframe for your personal goals these deadlines can be fluid. Plot out the exact amount of work that is going to be required for areas of development and set realistic timeframes to be able to complete these tasks, or disappointment will ensue.
  • Collaborate: Work with your managers on your personal plan as they may identify aspects you haven't considered. We all have different personality types, and some people might bite off more than they can chew, while others may not consider strengths that others can identify in them. Having this extra voice will help create a better plan for yourself individually and the company.
  • Revisit weekly: An annual audit is essential, but you should constantly update and change it. Treat your plan as a source of inspiration rather than a set of instructions.

If you are having trouble creating a personal plan that you believe will be effective, there is assistance. Several online tools can assist you with templates and advice on formulating the right plan for you. Alternatively, there are professional services where you can speak one-on-one with a consultant who can identify your strengths and help you manage your workload.