Big business often spends time in the Fall making budgets and plans for the next year. In my early days of banking, the place where I worked counted budget season as a cult classic. People burned the midnight oil making these budgets. We were zero based budget since before that was a thing.
If you are not familiar with that term, it means you don’t assume anything. Start over. Build the budget and plan as though you had no history. This includes essentially re-justifying everything. Being a manager in those days was tough, but it was a great lesson. We had a very profitable, and healthy bank.
When looking ahead to a new year it’s not a bad idea to begin that personal planning too. The most successful people I know use planning in each business season to plot their course. Why shouldn’t you and I do that too? Do you have a time when you and your spouse take time to map out the upcoming days, weeks and months? Sadly, I don’t know too many couples who have a whole year planned ahead. Of course there might be that special trip or event, like a wedding. How often does the whole year get some kind of goal setting applied?
Truly it is not as daunting as you might think. Here are a couple of simple rules a good friend of mine uses.
- Ask yourself what worked this past year? Do you want to do more or less of it?
- Ask yourself what did not work? Do you want to fix it or eliminate it? (Most opt to stop it).
- What is new and different that deserves attention or prioritization for the new year?
- Are you reaching past goals?
These are all great ways to get the discussion started so that your new year is more prosperous, productive, and rewarding.
Question: What can you do differently to prepare your new year planning?