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Planning Essentials

December 1, 2010

From a consumer standpoint December is as a month to buy holiday gifts for family, friends and clients from companies like From an entrepreneur’s viewpoint December is a month to start planning for the new year. Although many large corporations prepare their annual budgets at the end of September instead of December, most women entrepreneurs I know spend the last month of the year planning for the new year.

Since 1995 I have used December as a review, planning and budget month for my business. Planning in December became a habit when I worked professionally at Le Moyne College and was responsible for scheduling 35 events across the country and two large on-campus events annually.  December was always our budget and event planning month. So along with making sure to send out holiday cards and gifts to major clients, I have always used the last month of the year to prepare and plan. Many women entrepreneurs I have spoken with do the same, unless they are a retail business busy with holiday commerce.

The last month of the year can also be the perfect time for not only preparation but reflection. A dreary day in December can inspire us to look beyond the rain on the windows and settle into a day of reviewing our year of successes and challenges. Sometimes only by looking back can we see a clear path for the future.  So if you survived this year’s slower economic pace, perhaps today, or this month, is the perfect time to analyze the year and set realistic, and hopeful goals, for the next year.

Remember business plans are really decision-making tools. There is no set way to create the perfect one.  The content of the plan is your vision, strategy, and statistics for accomplishing goals. By declaring a personal vision and plan you’ll be guided in the right direction.

Today I encourage you to make the month of December a strategic planning month for your business. Set aside time on your calendar now to review this year’s statistics, successes and problems and to start planning for 2011.

The gift of planning is the advantage it gives you to be focused and organized. We can’t be successful women entrepreneurs without analyzing the past and planning strategically for our future.

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