The year is almost half over – it’s a great time to check in with your business plan and access where you are. If you’re lagging behind, read the following tips and get back on track:

Vision: Have a very clear, defined, and detailed vision for one, three, and ten years. One of the habits of highly successful people is to annually develop a written vision statement for their business and personal lives. Include details on various areas of your life such as business, family, health, spirituality, financial, and so on. Clearly articulating your vision takes the stress away from the “what if?”, “what’s next?”, and “who’s next?”. The benefit of doing this helps clarify things like: How much money do you need to earn this year to support your lifestyle? How many new clients? How many transactions will you complete? And so on. Know what needs to happen in order for you to stay on top.

Goals: Make sure 2010 is Your Best Year Yet. We have already established that highly successful people have a written vision statement, but they also have clearly stated goals and a system or process for keeping accountable to those goals. Goals force you to be clear, focused and energized. The key requirements here are action steps. Dare to take the necessary action steps to complete the goals.

Go from “Good to Great”: Make a list of your accomplishments for the past 12 months; things that went well, were effortless, made money, and that you enjoyed. Then make a list of your disappointments or things that didn’t go well. What lessons did you learn? Now, make the decision to stop doing what didn’t go well. Most of you thought I’d say to continue things what went well, but this would bring more of what you’ve got now: a good result. If you stop doing what didn’t go well or the things that disappointed you, you will go from “Good to Great” (for more on this subject read, From Good to Great by Jim Collins).

Maximize Your Time and Finances: The single biggest obstacle my clients report is a lack of time. There is no such thing as a lack of time – only an inability to prioritize time effectively. Create time in your schedule to “plan,” thereby becoming more effective in fewer hours. Get into the habit of following a weekly schedule with timeslots committed to handling necessary actions; for example, things like cold calling, paperwork, marketing, client meetings, and so on. Get a handle on your finances one year at a time. Know what your financial needs are well in advance so you can develop strategies to hit your target every time. Clarity in the financial department is essential.

Keep the Pipeline Full: Always have your eyes peeled for new clients. It is typical in business to have cycles where you market, get clients, close deals, and begin again. The key is to break this cycle and always be filling the pipeline (marketing). Just because you have a handful of clients you are currently working with doesn’t mean you give up that daily/weekly marketing timeslot. Also, just a note: be certain you have a system in place so that it’s effortless to go from prospect to close. This assures you will have energy left for marketing on a regular basis. Three consistent marketing actions per week will keep the pipeline full.

Deliver “Wow” Client Service: Always, always under promise and over deliver! Always tend to the details. And, always meet the clients’ needs (if you only work with ideal clients, this will be effortless). This creates raving fans. These raving fans will continue to employ your services as well as refer others. If you don’t, the guy sitting next to you would be thrilled to have your business.

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Filed under: June 2010

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