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Planning: That’s My Story and I’m Sticking to It – Part 4

Posted by Amy Lynch on May 25, 2023

Opportunities =  Next Year’s ‘Big Rocks’

One of the first steps in building the plan is doing a SWOT analysis.

SWOT: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.

There’s a lot to be learned here, and it’s important to be realistic. Our team does a short exercise in which we list some SWOT as individuals first. Then, we’ll do a round-robin, posting items in each category. We hope for some debate in this exercise.

The Strengths are tremendous, and it’s essential to note them. The Weaknesses need to be fixed, the Threats prepared for, and it’s the Opportunities that we’re going to work on in the new year!

The Opportunities become the ‘big rocks’ or major items we will tackle next year.

We’ll start by asking some vision, mission, and values questions:

  • How many people are on our team?
  • How do people describe our company culture?
  • Who are our customers and how do we treat them?
  • How do customers describe their experience with us? What do they tell their best friends?
  • What accomplishment are we most proud of?
  • What accomplishment is our team most proud of?
  • What do we do better than anyone else?
  • Describe our office and culture in detail.
  • Describe our service area.

We start the planning process in early October, so it’s hard to be certain of what the next year will look like. It’s still early, therefore it is difficult to tell what customer demand, employee retention, and recruitment will look like. So, we start with things that we can discuss. Next, we break up the agendas into various categories like human resources, safety, vehicles, or equipment. Then as the year comes to a close, we can better predict some financial numbers for the new year.

This is a lot to take in, I know. Just start. Use my formula until you develop your own. You can do it.

Build muscle. See you Monday.

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