This time of year is traditionally one where people take stock of what they’ve achieved throughout the current year and what they might change or do in the new year. Many of my regular readers will know that I usually have a Prayer and Planning day mid January to plan for the new year. I’ve been doing this for several years and having had a business coach has helped with that process.
This year (2010) was different in that I found it harder to be focused at the beginning of the new year. I’d shifted to a new location and further away from my business coach so hadn’t kept in contact with him as much. And I really wasn’t sure what I wanted to achieve for the year so the planning thing didn’t get cemented by writing goals on paper. Perhaps it was a result of things that had transpired in my life for the previous year and a half (loss of a family member, shifting, resorting stuff, unpacking, etc) but I look back now and find I hadn’t achieved nearly as much as I would have (I don’t think) if I’d been more focused with my planning earlier in the year.
So it’s back to my regular Prayer and Planning day in a couple of weeks and focusing on what this new year will bring me.
- – I know I want to read more books so I will set a goal to read a new book a month (at least).
- – I’ve already been writing in my new diary things I want to do – finish organising my (new) office. We’d pretty much unpacked what was needed so I could keep working and just stopped. I have boxes that still need going through, but thankfully not a lot of boxes.
- – Update some websites (I’ve already done two so am on track for this).
- – Continue building the new customer relationship program I began using to maintain contact with my VA team members and clients (I’ve already sent out emails requesting information to add to the database for this and have had a lot of responses).
- – Update the Facebook Pages I’ve created. This is a new role I enjoy and want to help clients with this also.
- – Gain a new regular client with at least 5 hours’ work a week but more would be great. Or perhaps 2 clients x 5 hours each.
- – And hopefully do a course in photography – which is my passion.
I guess you could say I already have a good idea of what my goals will be for 2011.
It’s important when setting goals that you have something for business but also something personal – a reward for yourself if you like. In the past that has mean going on an overseas trip, improving my photography skills, spending more time with family members and even shifting to the country. All of these things have been achieved but I doubt they would have, had I not set them as goals.
Same with my business. 2010 saw the Australian VA Conference (AVAC) launched successfully as a result of a 2009 goal, and we are now planning AVAC 2011 but this time with the help of a committee as last event there were just 3 of us doing the work and it was pretty intensive to say the least. We have a bigger group assisting with the planning and preparation this time round. However, many other things I would have liked to do in 2010 weren’t achieved, simply because I hadn’t set goals on paper – they were in my mind, but not printed on paper in front of me.
I guess you could say that 2010 was probably a year of settling in – to new surroundings, adjusting to new family dynamics (loss of a family member but we gained our first grandchild), meeting new people, getting back to networking locally, etc. After a hiatus of just not going out networking and mixing and mingling with people, I finally got back to doing this in the latter half of this year and the slowness of my business through the year I believe is a definite result of just not networking for over a year. A long-term regular client moved on and I’ve just not replaced them and other clients have had slow times themselves. Networking is paramount at all times and it is something I’ve written about often myself and something I am now actively getting back to doing.
So, are you making plans for the new year about the direction of your VA business? Why not share them here?