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Wanted: Grounding your 2017 Business Plan

The year is all but over.  You have a few short weeks now to develop a very special list of wants. I’m not talking about the holidays, however.

What do you want for your travel practice next year? The question “What do you want” can sometimes be one of the most difficult to answer. It’s an odd psychological quirk we often find it far easier to say what we don’t want. We have a natural resistance to saying what we want, as though we may sound overly anxious, needy, or capable of jinxing our luck.

Wanted Poster Outlaw Gang Wild WestOur wants are what pull us forward in life. Our wants motivate us. Instead of being uncomfortable with wanting, perhaps we should instead accelerate and empower our capacity for wanting.  The key, of course, is better understanding WHAT we want. It is all too easy to mistake what we want and end up with something other than what we truly desire.

If we don’t articulate what we want, we tend to not visualize our objectives very well. As a result, we end up settling for what we get and not knowing the difference. But forget about “we.”  What you want is all about YOU. Whether you are an employee in a large travel firm or you own your business, goals and objectives tend to be a very personal issue.

I don’t really worry about the concept of greed when I consider what I want. Like most of you, I have a built-in monitor keeping check on my desires.  When we are thinking well, our truest desires have their own moral compass and they evolve and mature over time. We can usually trust our desires if we monitor them, think them through, live with them long enough, and strive for self-awareness.

You know it is best to make a very clear request when you want something. Requests veiled in too many layers of language are often not understood. Again, clear articulation assists understanding. It’s time to be clear with yourself.

When it comes to your business plans for 2017, start by asking what you want. What do you want 2017 to look like in terms of your finances and in terms of your time commitment? How much growth do you want to experience and how many clients do you want to have? How much free time do you want with your family? What specialties do you want to take on? What destinations do you want to visit? What do you want your business mix to be? How do you want next year to look differently from this year?

If you really want to understand your desires, write them down. When you write down your thoughts, you articulate them far better then when you “think” them to yourself.  Writing down your wants is not busy work but an important step in better understanding your goals. You don’t understand well what you cannot articulate. Unexpressed thoughts tend to have a fuzzy, dream-like quality.

The top players in any business have a clear picture of their path. Once you have a list of wants, you will have a good start on your 2017 business plan. Schedule an appointment with yourself this week and write down a short list of goals for next year. It’s a good first step on your way to not only knowing what you want, but achieving those same goals.

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