"Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes... but no plans."
--- Peter Drucker
I don't know about you, but every year about this time I begin to consider my resolutions for the upcoming new year. It's probably a good habit, I'm not sure because I don't always keep many of the resolutions I make, but at least the effort is there. Making resolutions to lose weight, quit smoking, exercise more, spend less money, make more money, be nicer to the customers, be nicer to the family, and so forth are all great resolutions to make. But are resolutions really the key to success in these things? Do they really work?
One definition of resolution found is a formal expression of opinion or intention made. In other words, a resolution is a good intention to do something. Intentions are good, but are intentions "resolute" enough? If I told the cop that I intended to stop at the stop sign, but didn't, would that be enough to get me out of a ticket? Probably not, but it may be worth a try.
"First comes thought; then organization of that thought, into ideas and plans; then transformation of those plans into reality. The beginning, as you will observe, is in your imagination."
--- Napoleon Hill
Planning though, puts legs on resolutions. Plans lay out the path for achieving success with the stated resolutions. If I make a resolution to increase sales by 10 percent every month, I may find a way to do that in January but may lose steam in the remaining eleven months, because I don't have a plan on how to bring my resolution to reality. I had good intentions, but my resolution begins to fit nicely in the category of dreams.
"Failed plans should not be interpreted as a failed vision. Visions don't change, they are only refined. Plans rarely stay the same and are scrapped or adjusted as needed. Be stubborn about the vision, but flexible with your plan."
--- John C. Maxwell
By making plans in the beginning of the year, the brain begins to design a course on how to achieve the resolutions. Stated resolutions may be fine for warming up the mind to conceive a plan, but by itself, a resolution is only a wish. Planning gets all kinds of resources moving. Once a plan is put down on paper, a list of sorts is developed for what is needed to bring the final result of the planning to fruition.
"I'll probably make loads of plans, and then just sit around on my bottom all day long and do nothing."
--- John Deacon
Begin this week to make plans for 2019. I believe it's going to be a great year for sign businesses and that laying down a good plan now will put us all in a better position to win. However, once the plan is on paper, we must act. The planning is only the beginning. First create the plan and then devise action steps for taking the plan from paper to reality.
"You can always amend a big plan, but you can never expand a little one. I don't believe in little plans. I believe in plans big enough to meet a situation which we can't possibly foresee now."
--- Harry S. Truman
So, make resolutions, but also make plans. In fact, skip the resolutions this year and go directly to developing plans for your business and personal life. Make big, achievable plans, but plans that are just a little out of reach so they will stretch you.
Happy New Year!