Don't let the sun set prematurely on your 2016 ambitions! Most attorneys will wait until mid-January or even February to actually sit down and get serious about a business or marketing plan for the 2016 calendar year. You can get a jump on those attorneys - and on your own potential for procrastination by planning ahead right now.
Below is a simple example framework - adjust accordingly for your needs and availability. Use the ample time between assignment dates to adjust for changes in your schedule, and also to allow your subconscious brain to help bring ideas to your conscious mind.
Nov. 21 - Start this weekend by brainstorming around your goals, ideas, mountains to climb, clients to land, projects to launch. Write it all down freely without editing - even the outlandish and the far afield. The act of brainstorming freely can help bring your brightest concepts to the forefront. If you spend (this weekend) on brainstorming, your subconscious will continue feeding ideas to you in the days following the primary session. Gather your ideas into a single place: a notebook you carry with you, on a large whiteboard, or on scraps of paper stored in a clear bowl on your desk - whatever works and serves as a central collection zone.
Dec. 5 - This weekend, review your ideas and place them into groups. For example: one pile for ideas that truly excite you, a second pile for ideas you like, and a third for so-so ideas. Organize the first group by priority. Priority may come from how easy it is to implement, how broad a network you have to help you execute, etc.
Dec. 12 - Take the first two priorities and brainstorm on each individually: what will you need to accomplish the goal (cost, time, referrals, research, etc.). As with the initial session, try to exhaust your exploration of ideas for both of your priority topics. (By giving your top two priorities focused attention, you stand to achieve fulfillment of those ambitions - rather than diverting your attention to additional, competing goals. If you indeed achieve the first two, you can always return to the next items on your list.)
Dec. 19 - Draft assignment sheets for each of the two goals. An Excel workbook is great for concisely listing ideas and moving them around by priority. At this stage, you may want to create one workbook for each of your two goals, and use the worksheet tabs to list various aspects: one tab for people in your network who might help you achieve the goal, another tab listing your targets and prospects, and other tabs for additional, required tasks.
Jan 2 - Review the assignment sheets for each goal. Add target dates and deadlines for steps required to move toward the goal. The result this week should be your personal set of tasks for the month.
Continue setting aside time each week to develop the habit of working on your business. Do this, and hold yourself accountable, work with an accountability partner to keep you on task - and you will be further down the road this time next year.
Flip Cat Consulting works with law firms, practice groups, and individual attorneys and professionals to address business development strategy and goals. Contact us for a consultation today!