Five Steps to Keep Your Business Moving Forward

David Day

3 min read
(Photo for Meet the Robinsons, copyright, Disney 2007)

So, you’ve “pivoted.” How’s it going? You got some PPP money. Run out yet?
Let me guess: some customers are coming back, but it’s not like it was. You’re doing your best to keep it going under the circumstances. You’ve adjusted your staff, changed their responsibilities, re-worked your product or service and maybe even changed how you advertise.

All this, and you’re still not sure if it’s going to work.

The only thing we know for sure is that we don’t know for sure. This is where we rely on our instincts and our ability to keep moving forward. The past six months may feel like failure, but I prefer to consider the experience as a workout- a training ground for future success. We’re stronger today than we were six months ago. You just can’t see it yet. Optimistic? Yes, absolutely, and you are, too. If you weren’t, you would not be reading this. Here’s how Louis from Meet the Robinson’s experienced it…

So grab a cup of coffee, a notepad, and a pen (not a phone or tablet-let’s go analog on this). Now get someplace alone and quiet and without potential interruption.

Now, write down your answers to these questions:
  1. What do I want this company to look like in 3 years?
  2. What are three things that need to happen to achieve that goal?
  3. What are the foreseeable obstacles to these three things?
  4. What can I do now to eliminate these obstacles?
  5. Who can I enlist for help, advice, or aid?
Don’t try to have perfect answers; just write down what comes to mind. The exercise is as much for getting your mindset on planning, strategy, and problem solving as it is for action. In other words, the questions are often more important than the answers. Your answers may change as you go, but now you are moving forward.

I find that many business leaders like us are just so darn busy trying to survive we aren’t thinking- we’re just doing. We’re stuck, and we don’t see a way forward. When that happens, we have to stop, think, and plan. Entrepreneurs aren’t usually great at planning- we are great at doing. But if we take an hour to think it through and write it down, we go from internalizing our thoughts to externalizing a plan. That’s called a strategy, and you can’t win the battle without a strategy.

One last question to answer: What is one thing you will do today that help you keep moving forward towards your answer to number 1 above?

It’s a new DAY. Make it great. 

David Day is a marketing and business growth consultant with an emphasis on customer service, advertising, and business culture.

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