The Power of Planning: Developing a Strategic Roadmap for the New Year

Pat yourself on the back! You’ve navigated your way through 2023 and hopefully you are feeling proud. I know all too well how the holiday season anxiety can sneak in throughout the month of December. This is a time when my personal life becomes a bigger priority, and it can be a bit stressful keeping track of everyone’s “out of office” dates to ensure we meet deadlines before the new year. Celebrate what you’ve accomplished in the past 12 months, but also dream and look forward. I would love to hear more on our next Key Call, how you will be preparing for success in 2024!

In the meantime, let the following steps be your guide to developing a strategic roadmap for the new year.

First Steps Start with Organization

Contemplating all you want to accomplish in the coming year can be a formidable and exhilarating mental tango. I recommend organizing your goals into a timeline so you can clearly see how your they coincide with personal commitments (like family vacations 🏝️) and how the work to accomplish these goals needs to be delegated.  

The Questions To Ask Yourself Now

This roadmap should empower you to embrace the year’s conclusion with a sense of liberation, simplicity, and, ideally, enjoyment! It’s important, before plotting strategies for each quarter, to ask yourself these questions now:

  1. Do you know the tasks that are absolutely necessary to complete before the year’s end? If not, re-prioritize your work and inform clients or other project trades of any shifted submittal deadlines.
  2. Take a mental note of your relationship with each client. Is it where you want it to be? Can you ask them to write you a letter of recommendation to have handy for that dream project you want next year? Candid feedback will help you sharpen your skills and process, even if it’s a bit hard to swallow at the time.
  3. Are you working with trades that respect you and make you shine?
  1. Did you review your team members at least once this past year? If not, schedule a meaningful chat with them this month.  Make it a point to learn something new about each of them.  That news should either strengthen your bond or reveal something that will change the course.
  2. Do you have the right people supporting you? Did you feel confident and prepared in meetings? Did you meet or exceed your deadlines?
  1. Who expressed interest in you or your business this year? Who didn’t express interest that you wished had?
  2. What were the missed opportunities of this year?
  3. Design and/or order any additional materials needed to reach out to clients in Q1.
  1. Are there any orders nearing completion that you can bill for now?
  2. Are there any items that do not have an invoice attached to them?  (hint: pull a “Work in Progress” report in your billing software.)
  3. Ask your CPA if you may need to hold on collecting a payment or making a donation for tax purposes
  4. How much did each project profit? Using your billing software reporting, this practice is handy to dictate future goals. Good economic growth typically falls within 2-4%. (Source: Indeed)
  1. Set up your “OOO” email reply this month.  Send clients personal emails about your holiday closure.
  2. Where am I going next year to show up stronger, brighter and longer for my clients, my team and myself? Book your vacation travel for 2024 NOW before the work vortex sucks you in.


Give Yourself A Runway For The New Year

Tackling these questions in December allows you to hit the ground running when January 1st arrives. This exercise will give you and your team the runway needed to begin strategically planning for business growth in the new year and new possibilities! Happy planning!


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