Friday, October 20, 2017

Planning for your “Plan B” before you need it

Its seems now more than ever that people are looking for a “Plan B”, a catch net, a self created security plan. This probably isn’t a bad idea considering that employer’s loyalty to its shareholders far out weights it’s loyalty to staff and now a days, being a corporate executive requires the relationship skills of a leader of a political party.

As you scan your list of aptitudes that you could capitalize on, whether its interior design, handy work, home delivered healthy meals, cake making, photography, or art, you’ll want to create a detailed plan for your business. Your business plan will help guide your efforts towards reaching your target market, generating profits, creating a sales funnel, and a general day-to-day road map.

According to Brian Tracey, “you can’t hit a goal that you can’t see”; having a rock solid business plan, even if it’s a part time business, will give you focus and help you narrow in on the efforts that are most important. But probably more important than a business plan is old fashioned hard work and action. At the end of the day you need to secure some jobs, go through the sales cycle, ask your customers for feedback, and make improvements. By going through this process many times you will have created the illusive “sales cycle”, be able to better predict your profit margins, determine how many sales you need to reach your financial targets, determine which types of jobs are the ‘sweet spot’, and assess your niche in a competitive market.

You may ask yourself – is it worth it? Well, that’s a personal question but in my opinion yes, it’s worth the effort. If having a side business allows you to make a few extra mortgage payments a year, assist with your child’s education, buy an income property, or invest in the stock market. In many ways, we’ve gotten lazy. Our grandparents worked from sun up to sun down, 6 days a week. These days our expectations are high but our effort and focus is low. It doesn’t take much to turn this ratio around and generate more money for investments. Further, a side business will create an income tax shelter and if you’re looking to get out of the rat race in the future, having an established business is the lowest risk way to build an exit strategy.

Yes, planning is essential but good, old fashioned elbow grease will get your results and answers and mould your business plan for the future.