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Strategic Planning and Biking Involve the Same Viewpoints

July 31, 2020

Friday Feelings, Business Success Strategies, Entrepreneurial Advice for Women Entrepreneurs, Female Business Owners, Small Businesses

After a good, long week of learning, Friday morning was free from technical education and my bike was calling me so off I went for a ten-mile ride under the rich green canopy, paved path, and winding forest around a lake. Fitness always makes me think of business lessons and today was no different, especially with a head full of new knowledge.

The first mile of the ride, I looked down past the handlebars and tires to check out the path’s condition. Fully focused on what was right below and in front of me to avoid any creepy dead animals from the lake, tree limbs, or resting water, my only attention was on the view immediately below my feet.

After the first mile, my eyes focused forward to avoid runners, roller-bladders, elderly people holding hands, and young parents walking children in strollers with pets in tow. I also needed to look forward because the path curves and bends wildly at times in the dark green foliage. Without peering forward to see where I was going in the short term, meant I might veer off path or run into someone. This secondary focus was essential for my biking safety and others.

The last mile of the bike ride, having lost the crowds of people and winding way, I looked up to the sky to take in the tops of the trees that kept me cool, the blue sky and white clouds floating by, with birds soaring – much like my own spirit. This long range, upward focused vision is what touched my heart biking.

After three days of strategic planning education, I quickly realized the analogy of biking and bicycle riding. A majority of business owners spend their time on the tasks immediately in front of them – those short term duties and responsibilities. At some point in their yearly entrepreneurial journey, they take their eyes off the short term tasks to gaze out to see where the “business road” is going due to market changes, Covid-19, competition, budget adjustments, and client requests.

Once a quarter, semi-annually, or annually, entrepreneurs should lift their eyes way above frequent responsibilities to touch base with their overall mission and vision, to feel the sweet air of success, and embrace some joy because before long they’ll be back at the practical, logical parts of planning and managing. If I never raised my chin, head ,and eyes to look above the tree tops towards the end of my bike ride, I wouldn’t have enjoyed it as much. It takes keen awareness after partaking in hard work in your business or on a bike ride, to glance at a vista to soak in the benefits and remind you why you work (aka bike) so hard.

So remember strategic planning is an essential part of your joy ride through a year of entrepreneurship. It’s equally important to focus on daily tasks as it is to look or project ahead to avoid bumps in the road, and to end with a wider view and appreciation of the work you’ve completed. Make sure to re-energize yourself quarterly by going back to your original business vision so you can keep peddling forward the next quarter with a clear direction, purpose, and plan.

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