How I took an unclear dream and created a focused vision
(originally published to the Business Owner Tide Chart newsletter - January 2020)
When I first launched Tradewinds Learning my launch consisted of a website, business cards, and a social media post. My website featured programs I had been facilitating for years and a few new programs that I had in development. My business card featured a beautiful vision statement I had worked diligently to craft. The Instagram page had a few posts and a few followers, mostly family and friends. This may all sound like a solid start, the problem was, I had no plan for what to do next.
I had thought about what could happen but I hadn’t developed a plan to get there or written any goals.
So naturally, Tradewinds Learning didn’t really go anywhere. I did one speaking gig on a topic that wasn’t even on my website but which a colleague knew I could speak about. Here’s the thing about how I launched my business, I knew better. I knew that just throwing something at the wall and seeing if it would stick wouldn’t get me anywhere. I knew how important it was to write down goals and to have a strategic plan. Fast forward to today where I have spent months taking my own advice. I have attended several conferences and workshops myself. I have completed workbook pages and done my own brainstorming sessions. I bought a 3 month calendar and a goal planner.
Today, my business has a focused purpose and a new vision statement. Today, I map out my plans for sharing content and developing new programs on a 3 month basis. I joined a business coaching group for women entrepreneurs. It provided me a place to share ideas and learn new strategies. I started using a goal planner book. It has given me direction and a format to reflect and dream about where I want my business to grow. It also allows me to incorporate the other aspects of my life into my planning.
As a small business owner, business doesn’t exist in a bubble. Keeping in mind everything else I have going on is important. Through this process I have been able to reflect on my accomplishments and dream about where I want to grow next. The most impactful step has been writing down my goals. I have them hanging in my office. I see them and I talk about them.
There are so many different processes and tools you can use to set goals for your business and your life. What has been working for me is Cultivate What Matter’s Power Sheets. They may work for you! Or maybe there is another goal setting guide that fits with your style. The important thing is to start.
But before I started goal setting I had to develop a vision statement that would support my dream, inspire me, give me focus, and tell the world what I was doing. Everything I do for Tradewinds Learning supports my vision;
to support small business owners to create great customer experiences and have happy and engaged employees so you can achieve your business goals.
Wherever you may be in your business, keep moving the needle forward. Do you need to start with a vision statement? I offer a workshop to guide you through the process of creating or refining one [click here to learn more]. Do you need to create goals? Check out this month’s download on SMART goals. And if you are on the ball and already achieving the goals you set, take the time for yourself to celebrate those accomplishments! You deserve it!