Year-End Business Planning:
As 2012 comes to a close, the final weeks of the calendar year are focused on ensuring year-end goals have been successfully achieved. You may be in the sales organization of your company and trying to "hit your numbers" or working in another function and looking to finalize important deliverables. In either case, it will be important to ask, "What needs to happen to close out the year strong?" The following best practices and lessons learned may be helpful with your business planning efforts.
Closing Out 2012:
- Review existing goals and action plans to determine if you are on target for closing out the year strong.
- Leverage existing business analytics and reports to assess if you are on track for goal attainment.
- Revisit and prioritize activities to ensure quick wins can be achieved.
- Evaluate remaining resources in this year's budget and allocate to opportunities with the highest potential.
- Ensure you are coordinated with your team on planned activities for shared customers.
- Take time to celebrate successes together.
Looking forward to 2013:
As you look forward to 2013, it will be essential to explore what lessons learned can be applied to effective business planning and execution for the coming year.
Did you reach your goals this year? If not, why? Coming together as a group to discuss your perceptions will help the team determine any lessons learned and assist in the creation of a shared view and revitalized plan for 2013.
Tips for improving your 2013 business planning activities include:
- Clarifying expectations, guiding principles, and what "good" looks like related to business planning.
- Reviewing external marketplace factors to identify what has changed and how that may influence plans for the coming year.
- Defining what business analytics and reports were most helpful in monitoring performance and uncovering opportunities; incorporate these into any of your on-going reviews.
- Asking the team to identify any less-than-useful activities (if any) and make decisions where not to spend time, money, or energy that will repeat outdated practices.
- Specifying how and when collaboration is needed to achieve goals.
Make sure to take the time to reflect on your own personal growth and successes. Ask yourself, "What do I need to stop, start, and continue doing in 2013?" "What support will I need?" Capture these answers and discuss them with your manager, e.g., during upcoming performance management meetings.
All of the above are suggested steps to take to close out the year strong and plan for an even better and more prosperous new year.
Wishing you a Happy and Joyous Holiday and continued success in 2013!
If you require any support with your business planning process or business acumen learning needs, please contact Dr. Wendy Heckelman at (954) 385-0770 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.