So, you have your business plan in place. You’ve got your marketing and blogging plans set and ready to put in motion. You may even have a life plan written out too. So, even if it’s just a vision board you have hanging in your office or something you keep to yourself on Pinterest, you likely have an area where you gather your hopes and dreams for your life.
But, what about the life plan for your small business? That’s not something you typically see on sites that are targeted toward helping you build your business. Instead, it’s something I’ve created myself.
What I mean by saying you need a life plan for your business is that the blueprint for the big picture of your life and your company need to align.
How much money do you need to make to live comfortably?
What age would you like to retire?
What are your plans for your business when that time comes?
Knowing the answers to these questions is key. It can help shape the strategy for what you’re doing with your small business and how you go about securing your funding. So I’m going to talk today about developing a life plan for your small business and how it can assist you with planning for the long term.
Determine Your Goals
Before you even get started on your life plan, you need to figure out your life goal. Next, you should evaluate how you live your life and what you want it to look like. Then, you’ll develop a plan to achieve that goal.
Being a small business owner is a lot of work. You juggle so many different jobs, and every single one of them is vital to your success. A surefire way to ensure you stay motivated is to know you’re working toward your life goal.
To help determine your entrepreneurial life plan, keep the following questions in mind:
- Do you want to have employees? If yes, how big of a staff do you want to have?
- What do you want your lifestyle to look like?
- How big do you want your profits to be?
- Are you able to work seven days a week? If you can, how long can you do that for?
- Do you need a business partner? Can you handle operating with one?
- How will you fund your personal bills and household during the beginning stages of your business?
You may have an amazing business idea, but you have to consider if it’s a good one for you and your family. Don’t swap a job that sucks your soul for a business that will take up every minute of your time.
Once you’ve figured out your overarching life goal, set some small goals along the way. Then, figure out how you’ll get there. If you have plans for your kids or other family members to take over your business when you’re ready to retire, plan a goal of hiring them in different positions so you can train them for more responsibilities. If you have plans of getting bought when you’re ready to retire, set goals so your business can run without you.
Keep an Eye on Longevity
It’s hard to imagine the end of your business when you’re just getting started. A lot of people simply want to launch a business around a passion or idea. They hope it succeeds at the onset, but it’s hard to think of it still being successful 20 or 30 years later.
Knowing what your business may look like can help you make decisions today and plan for the future. Think about these two examples:
- Business A wants to be extremely successful in the next five years and then be bought by a larger company
- Business B wants to be around for decades and have future generations take over the business when they’re ready to retire
These two examples will need different business strategies to achieve their goals. With Business A, they should start looking for investors to help their business skyrocket right away so potential buyers will be interested in a few years. Business B requires a slower, longer path to success.
As you set your goals, don’t just focus on the short term. Instead, look ahead to years down the road. What do you want your life to be? Your small business life plan should align with your personal goals. If it doesn’t, you need to take some time to rework that.
Don’t Forget About a Contingency Plan
What if, on the off chance, you get ill for several months? Will your business fall apart? What if you want to take a vacation that lasts several weeks?
You need to create a contingency plan that outlines what to do if you’re not around. You also need to make sure you have the proper insurance to cover yourself and your business financially if you become severely ill or injured. Who’ll be in charge in your absence? Are they authorized to make decisions?
This component of your life plan isn’t the most exciting and tantalizing one to make. You’re not looking at your success when you plan this out. Instead, you imagine the worst-case scenario and what it does for your business. When you start working on this portion, talk about it with the person you trust to run your business in your absence. They should know of your wishes and what procedures should take place.
Why Do I Need a Life Plan for My Small Business?
If you’re only documenting thoughts and plans in your mind and not a legal document, why is a life plan for your small business necessary?
Think about it in this light: how many ideas, big or small, do you get throughout the day? How many of those ideas do you remember? On top of that, how many do you put into action?
Thoughts and ideas become a reality when you put them down on paper. You need to bring them from your mind and into the world. On the same token, your goals will come to life when you write them down as well.
Even if your life plan is something only you see, it becomes a commitment between you and yourself. You’re committing to it. If your priorities or goals change over the years, you have full authority to alter your life plan. Primarily, this document keeps you on track. It gives you a direction to follow, not just for the short term but for the long term as well. Your vision and life goals are always in front of you, so you know what you’re working toward and why you’re working so hard.
There are no hard and fast rules when creating a life plan for your small business. The hardest part is just getting started.
Develop a Life Plan That Fits Both You and Your Small Business
Keep your life plan for your small business handy, so you can adjust as needed. You also want to be sure you’re on track to achieve your big-picture goals. I’ve created a life planning journal that’ll walk you through the process of building the life and business of your dreams. aesthetic
Do you have any other tips for creating a life plan for a small business? Drop a comment below.