How “preparing” makes it possible!
What can you do to make the most of 2017, both personally and business-wise? From my experience, preparation is the key. Getting ready for a new year is not all that different from preparing for a big race. That’s why I’m excited to give you my top 3 strategies for making the most of the upcoming year.
1. Buy a monthly planner or desk calendar – the biggest one you can find!
You can usually find something suitable at your local office supply store. You definitely want to be able to see a month at a time (not a week) and have enough room to write some important deadlines and tasks in the boxes for each day.
I suggest that you do this scheduling activity by hand, not on your computer. While I think that Asana, Basecamp, Trello, and several other online apps are pretty awesome, this is not the time to use them. You can transfer your information over to one of those tools later.
2. Think through your launch schedule
Find 20-30 minutes when you can sit quietly and think. During this quiet thinking time, you will identify the products and/or services that you currently have or that will be finished soon (within the next 10 months). Write these down in the front of your monthly planner. Are these all evergreen products (meaning available all the time) or are these products launched occasionally or seasonally and then pulled back down off the market? Put a star next to the ones that will require a launch.
Once you have identified the current and upcoming products that you will launch in 2017, pick a date for the launch, write it on your planner or desk calendar and circle it in red.
3. Work backwards for maximum readiness
Once your launch dates are marked down and circled on your calendars, it is time to work backwards. When preparing for a big race, you mark down your training dates that lead up to the race and the time required to do those trainings. Like a race, when you are preparing for a launch, you mark down all of the tasks that need to be accomplished before the launch date and the time required to get those tasks done.
For example, when I am preparing for a big product launch, these are just a few of the tasks that I will need to get done before the launch date:
- Set up necessary web pages
- Write email sequence for my subscribers
- Set up product in shopping cart
- Create a coordinating freebie
- Create sales video and/or webinar
Each of these tasks take time. If I have done them before, I usually know how long each one takes. It is important that I mark down when each thing needs to be accomplished and when I will work on it. Always allow 50-100% more time than you think you need just in case you run into a snag of some sort. Once every task is entered into your physical calendar then you can do this optional fourth step:
4. Transfer all of these dates into a project software, such as Asana or Basecamp.
Assign due dates, create “to do” lists, and decide if you will do the work or outsource it. And then congratulate yourself because you and your business are well on your way to a great 2017!