A detailed business plan for the upcoming new year is an amazing tool for every organization as it will delineate the strategy, objectives, and critical goals for the following year. While December marks the end of the calendar year, and business enterprises are busy meeting deadlines and doing reviews for the end of the financial quarter, this is also a great time to create a business plan for the next year. In fact, the end of the year is so conducive for such activities that in the US, December has become the National Write a Business Plan Month.
So, what to do and how to go about it when you are also under pressure to complete all the pending work and wrap up the year on a high note? End-of-the-year celebrations also provide you with a golden opportunity to engage with employees and use their feedback to review the performance of the business in the concluding year. You also need to analyze in detail all the relevant data from the past 12 months to determine your goals and tactics going forward. Remember that you cannot change the past, but the future can be shaped based on the experience and understanding of the past, coupled with the right strategy.
To create an effective and successful business plan for the new year, you may have to set aside one or two hours every day during December and go into the details. Map out your action plan, objectives, and goals to be achieved, and draw up a detailed master budget. Review your cash flow statements, profit and loss account, and balance sheet. Set realistic sales goals, review and brush up on marketing strategies, and make solid financial projections for the new year but don’t rush to conclusions. This is also a great time to interact and network with partners and business connections.
After it is written, let your plan rest for a few days while you mull it over in your mind. At the same time, do a complete SWOT analysis of your business, identifying both opportunities and threats. Plan out and set your goals and targets month-wise and also for the entire year. When you finish your business plan, start reviewing and editing it to realistic proportions and attainable goals that match with predictable and actual market realities. You will then be in a much better position in the new year when you have a detailed annual business plan.