Plan it Backwards

Developing a plan or list of tasks to get you from here to there is not always easy.

Start at the Finish

puzzle-maze-1Anyone who likes Puzzle Mazes, quickly learns that it’s much easier to work backwards from the finish that to start at the start.

The same is true for Business Planning. Just as it’s obvious where to exit the maze by looking at the finish, it’s easy to know what you need to do just before you obtain your final result. Similarly, as you define each task, the one previous to it becomes clearer.

Work your plan backwards in this manner until you get to where you are today..

Expect your plan to branch out. In many cases you will find that you need to complete more than one task to achieve the next step. Think of your goal as the trunk of the tree, and the various tasks coming together like the roots feeding the trunk.

Each step or task should be expressed as an actionable item. Expressing your ultimate vision in terms of an action often helps.

What event or threshold triggered the hire of the last employee or major purchase?

What Marketing activities will you use to increase your sales/revenue by 10%?

cash-flowKeep working through the plan until you have a detailed plan with specific action items and realistic time frames. These now become your Critical Path items for the Marketing, Operations, and Financial sections of your Business Plan.

With your Critical Path item in place, it should be easy to see where you will be spending your money. Work out your Cash Flow analysis based on your Critical Path items.

You’re almost there.

Don’t Stop Now!

 

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