How to enjoy your business planning for 2014 (yes, even though it’s December!)

At this time of year I don’t feel very inspired. And I certainly don’t feel like doing any business planning!

With so much to do on the run up to Christmas, everyone having coughs and colds  plus the long nights and dark days, I really just hang on in there until Christmas is over. Here’s the view from the top of our hill this morning…


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It’s no wonder I’m feeling sluggish, is it?  🙂

So usually I just leave my planning until the first few days of January.  This year I decided to be better organised though. I started the Christmas preparations in early November so I’ve had a more relaxed December, meaning that I’m in a better frame of mind to plan out the coming year.

To help me with my business planning I’ve grabbed a copy of Karen Gunton’s  BizPlanTastic planner…

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Yes, I do look half-asleep in that photo!

And it’s been great. In just one morning I got clear on my objectives for 2014, the products I want to create and I’ve even started my editorial calendar for my blogs and social media. The reason it’s been working so well for me is because it’s simple, flexible and it’s brightly coloured. Yes, I really do need colour on a British December day!

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Karen gives you some things to think about with your vision, branding, marketing, sales and other main areas of planning, then lets you pick the printable that works for you. I’ve got my printables on the floor in the photo above because I’m finding I think and plan better if I step away from the computer. That’s definitely worth a try if you’re struggling with your planning.

If you were reading Business Plus Baby back in January you might remember I recommended Leonie Dawson’s Create Your Amazing Year Planners.  These were great for me last for a few of reasons:

1. They made me realise that if planning was a fun process on some cheerful, colourful printables I was far more likely to do it.

2. They made me reflect on the previous year, put it behind me then think about the coming year.

2. They made me realise that I didn’t really know what I wanted, so I needed to go back and work on that first. It sounds obvious but sometimes you need to be told what’s right in front of your nose. And this year I have MUCH clearer picture of where I want to go.

I still recommend Leonie’s planners – you can buy the 2014 electronic version here and the 2014 print version here – but they weren’t quite right for me this year. For 2014 I needed a planner that was shorter, simpler and more flexible. And BizPlanTastic hit the spot.

 Get your copy of BizPlanTasic here.

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Comments

  1. I’ve go so many projects on, I’ve got separate project timelines i.e. what got to be done, when and who by. I check regularly and then add to a collective to-do list on Remember the Milk. Which would be best for me to use do you think?

    • Hi Libby, I guess you mean which planner – Karen’s or Leonie’s? I think it’s mostly down to the style you respond to best. Leonie is definitely more on the hippy/goddess/ erm…woo-woo side but if that’s your thing then that’s fine. Karen is not hippy/woo woo but her planner is still much more inspiring and fun to do than your average business plan! Here’s what Karen herself says about the difference –

      “you may wonder how this compares with leonie dawson’s life + biz planner. they are actually great companion pieces. leonie’s planner has a lot of reflection on the previous year in biz and then specific goal setting for the new year. my workbook also has the goal setting step but then focuses on actually making the plans (year, month, week) breaking plans up into tasks (monthly, weekly, daily task managment), choosing strategies (marketing, sales, brand, product), even things like doing editorial calendars or planning out one project. so i myself actually use BOTH of our planners! hers for the awesome reflection, and dreaming about the future, mine for planning it out and getting it done.”

      Does that help at all?

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