FAQ – New decade resolutions

A New Year can be a useful prompt to reflect about changes you want to make in your life and business. So how about a new decade? Where you were 2010? How about where you’d like to be in 2030?

The start of a new decade is as good a time as any to reflect, although there’s no bad time to step back and rethink what you want (unless you’re up scaffolding, or on a ladder).there’s no bad time to step back and rethink what you want (unless you’re up scaffolding, or on a ladder).

Put 2030 in your business ‘SatNav’

Just to see, I typed ‘2030’ into Google Maps… and it ended up in Antwerp. Now, I’ve nothing against Antwerp, but I’m not sure that’s really where I want to be in 2030.
These days, most of us use a SatNav to find the best route to a client – we want to know we’re going in the right direction. But do we really know whether we’re doing that with our business?
I bet a lot has changed in your business in the last 10 years – tools, techniques, paints, finances, staff, type of client, the impact of the internet… There are plenty of changes we can’t easily plan for.
Who knows how the world will change in the next 10 years? But it’s still important to have an idea of what kind of business and life you’re trying to build.

Why plan in a world of change?

While it’s true there are things out of our immediate control, there are plenty of things which are in our control, and we can plan for those. This means it’s pretty much up to you what kind of business you want to be working in (or not) in 2030.
A few examples:

• What’s your favourite kind of work? Do you want to specialise, maybe learn new skills, carve a name for yourself as a highly sought-after specialist?

• Are you feeling your age and want to do less physical but more highly skilled work? Or perhaps you want to build a larger firm, get off the tools and manage other decorators?

• Are you fed up with low paying jobs and want to create a more prestigious high class brand and clients with deeper pockets?

• Maybe you even want to change career – you wanted to be a lumberjack, leaping from tree as they float down the mighty
rivers of British Columbia?

• Perhaps your family situation has changed and you need to move closer to grandparents or grandchildren – How do you move your business to another area?

• You might have a role model in the industry and want to be
where they are are now.

You can take this exercise as flippantly or as seriously as you want, but I strongly suggest you write down a few ideas.
These big questions are the ones which don’t often come up when just thinking about New Year resolutions, which tend to focus on the ‘right now’.

Stop dreaming, start planning

Okay, perhaps you’ve decided that you want to build a larger firm. How do you do that? Who can you ask for advice? Have you worked in a larger firm and thought ‘I could run this’?
If you want a change in career, do you know what you want to do? Do you need to learn new skills and slowly build another business on the side?
Sometimes we only really think about where we’re at when we ask ourselves really big questions. They can be a bit scary to be honest, especially if you realise you want your business and your life to be totally different to where it is now. But there’s a lot of help out there – friends, family, colleagues, information on the internet, even getting a business coach (I’ve got one).

Break it down

The best advice for any goals is to break them into smaller bits. Break down your 2030 goal into five year chunks, then one year targets.
One year targets are much easier to actively plan for by breaking them into 90 day sections. What do you need to do in the next 90 days to really make progress towards your one year targets? Whether they’re financial, or learning new skills, or getting more of your ideal kinds of clients.
After 90 days, reassess, plan again and make new targets for the next 90 days. This stuff works, and thousands of businesses use this technique all over the world.
In your next coffee break, get a piece of paper and a pen and just write down a few ideas of where you’d like to be in 2030. It might just change your life.

You might even end up in Antwerp.