As we close out the final chapter of 2019, now is the perfect time to build your strategic plan for 2020. The next several weeks present an excellent opportunity to take stock of what has gone well this past year and what your goals should be to stay on track for your long-term vision.

Step 1: Review the past year

Financial manager giving end of year report to colleagues
Financial manager giving end of year report to colleagues

What has changed in the past year? Did your business expand? Did you hire new team members? Maybe you decided to downsize. Whatever happened, reviewing the last 12 months helps give you data points you can use in planning 2020. What were your most significant achievements over the previous year? If you have a team, ask around, what went well in each department? What didn’t go well? Get specific.

Look at the data you’ve collected over the last year. Capture all of that information, take a moment to analyze it on a company-wide level, and ask yourself, how can we build off of this momentum?

If you haven’t had a chance to do a full review of your business, take a step back and do so now. It will help you tremendously in building your 2020 plan.

Step 2: Craft your vision

Businessman setting business plan in front of office window
Businessman setting business plan in front of office window

It’s important to remember where you’re headed and why. When you’re setting your 2020 plan, you want to align with the overall vision for your company. Your vision should act as your north star. When you’re setting goals, they should be in pursuit of that end destination.

If you don’t already have a clear vision, or if you feel yours is outdated, it might be time to take another look.

Step 3: Set your goals

2020 goals concept on chalk board
2020 goals concept on chalk board

What do you need to accomplish in 2020 to achieve your vision?

Identify 3-4 overarching goals for your business. Do you want to recruit 15 new people? Do you want to open a second location? Write down 3-4 things you need to accomplish this year to help you achieve your long-term vision.

Choose SMART goals (i.e., Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely) that are measurable and easy to track. For example, a goal to “Increase search engine traffic by 10% in the next two months” is easier to measure than “increase brand awareness”.

Once you have those big rock items, go ahead and brainstorm 5-6 strategic initiatives you can use to achieve those goals. Once you’ve identified 5-6 for each goal, you need to prioritize. Consider your resources and prioritize each initiative accordingly. Remember, over a year, the best teams will accomplish 4 initiatives per goal; depending on the size of your team, you might be able to accomplish more, but as a rule of thumb 4 initiatives per goal is an excellent place to start.

Step 4: Build your roadmap

Entrepreneur walking on a road
Entrepreneur walking on a road

Here’s the fun part. Now that you have your goals and objectives, and you know what you are working towards (your vision), it’s time to break it down into tactics and create a timeline.

For argument’s sake, let’s say you have a 3-year vision of hitting $10M in revenue. How much do you need to make in 2020 to be on track for that goal?

2020 – $5 M
2021 – $ 7.5 M
2022 – $10 M

Great, now that you have those numbers, break it down. What do you need to make next year to make it happen? What do you need to get there on there on a monthly, weekly, and daily basis?

The most common metrics to break down are leads for marketing, sales transactions, and conversions, as well as people and resource needs to achieve your revenue goal.

Here is an example:
2020- $ 5,000,000 M
average sale size – $2000
Year – 2,500 transactions (average sale size/revenue goal)
Month – 209 transactions (Number of sales needed/12 months)
Week – 48 transactions (average sale size/52 weeks)
Day – 10 transactions (Number of sales needed a week/5 days)

This micro breakdown is where the magic starts to happen as you realize what will break or what needs to shift in the business to get to that level.

Once you get down to the day, you can choose to take it a step further by determining how many calls or meetings each person on your sales team needs, then how many prospects they need to schedule a meeting, and so on. Once you have this framework, you can start seeing how your tactics will come into play.

Developing a roadmap for your business is a necessary way to break your goals into digestible, achievable actions to keep your business on track. Apply this framework to your company and see how much simpler your big audacious goals feel.

If you’re not sure where to start, you don’t have to go at it alone. Schedule a free two-hour session to dig into your business to uncover bottlenecks and develop a roadmap based on where you are in your business and where you would like to be. With this roadmap, you’ll have a tangible plan you can implement to reach your long-term goals.

Want to learn more about conducting an end of year review? Visit Cultivate Advisors or leave Casey Clark a comment down below!

This article originally published on GREY Journal.