By Malcolm Gibbons: Many salon owners don’t plan and those that do seem to most often not follow their plan or typically forget they even have a plan altogether. And that’s not good for their team, their clients, their business and ultimately themselves.
So, here’s the question – Are you the salon owner who doesn’t plan, or who plans and doesn’t follow it or the salon owner who sticks to the plan and sees it through?
If you’re one of the first two, then don’t despair, you’re part of the majority, in fact only 5% of salon owners regularly plan for the success they want. And a huge 32% plan but then forget they’ve got a plan and don’t follow through generally because life gets in the way. That means essentially 63% of salon owners don’t have a plan at all – and that’s hurting them big time!
The big question is why then don’t you plan or follow it through? There are some significant answers.
- Once the plan is established there is no accountability to get it completed and
- You know you need a plan but just don’t know where to start as it such a big job and to a lesser degree.
- You have no idea of what to put in it at all and need some inspiration and help from the start
So let me help with some ideas:
There are lots of reasons why planning is a good idea, and it can have some big benefits.
Making a plan will help you to:
- Decide what you want (your goals)
- Work out if you can achieve what you want
- Think about how you are going to achieve what you want
- Establish any extra support you might need
- Think about things in your life you would like more control over (new responsibilities)
- Ponder what you might do if some things don’t work out
- Consider the changes you want to make in your business and life, and
- Determine how to make these changes successfully
- It’s also important to consider that support and planning are really important when you are making big changes or ‘transitions’ in your life.
These ‘transitions’ can be both exciting and scary because they often mean:
- Things may not happen the way they used to
- There will be new things that you are responsible for
- You will have more freedom
Whether you want to make big changes, or just want more control over your business planning will help you think things through, enable you to make good decisions and take control.
Like a map, a plan can help you to see where you want to go, and feel more confident about how to get there. If something is not working, you can review your plan and see what needs to change. Best of all, you can look back at your plan to see where you came from and celebrate the progress you’ve made!
To achieve everything you want to achieve, you should plan, manage, review, budget and also assume a certain level of risk.
To help you out today I’m going to cover the five hot principles of successful planning.
Get it dreamt, Rough It, Get it organised, Get it down and Get it reviewed.
- Hot Principle One: Dreamt it!
Deliberately take some time to dream, one of the biggest lessons in my life in business was that sitting down at the beach on a Wednesday morning thinking about business and making plans (when I felt quite frankly, I should be working) is actually work! And believe me I still sometimes have guilt feelings that I should be doing something more, but also I recognise that to do something more, I need this time to dream, think and plan what that something more is… and it’s the same for you!
- Hot Principle Two: Rough it! That’s right – rough it!
No one ever wrote a bestselling novel right off the bat, they needed a rough draft first, then they tuned it and tuned it until the finished result was achieved. The important step with roughing it is that you actually get some of your dreams and goals on paper, along with some of your ideas on how you plan to achieve them for next year… and as I said, it doesn’t have to be perfect right away!
- Hot Principle Three: Organise it!
Now, once you’ve roughed it, it’s time to look over your notes and start to refine them into some form of order, so start by breaking down your dreams into goals. Now I don’t want to be telling you the obvious (grandma and eggs come to mind) so I’m going to assume that you are able to set yourself goals from the dreams, from the thoughts, and the ideas you have had …BUT I do want to help you stay out of overwhelm and believe me it’s really easy to get into overwhelm if you’re not careful. You see, planning is brilliant, and of course dreaming the dream is amazing too but where most of us fall off the wagon is in the implementation stage for one (or both) of two reasons, bringing us to:
- Hot Principle Four: Do it!
I am reminded of the difference between motion vs action. Motion is when you’re busy doing something, but that task will never produce an outcome by itself. Action, on the other hand, is the type of behaviour that will get you a result. Motion will never produce a final result. Action will.
When you’re in motion, you’re planning and strategising and learning. Those are all good things, but they don’t produce a result. Are you doing something? Or are you just preparing to do it? Are you in motion? Or are you taking action?
ACT = Action Changes Things! So let’s act and start getting it done, Implement your Plan!
- Hot Principle Five: Review it!
Your business plan is a living document that grows and changes over your salon’s lifetime.
The effectiveness of your plan depends on you referring back to it as a reminder of what you’re going to do, and updating it to keep it relevant. Reviewing your progress against your plan on a regular basis is a good way to measure actual performance, and will form the basis for revising and updating it.
Do you sometimes find yourself sitting at your desk or in the staffroom, or lounge at home for hours on end getting nothing done? And the next day comes and you have even more to do! I mean there’s all the daily stuff that needs to be done along with those ‘projects’ that can seem to take hours of dedicated effort and you just can’t seem to find the time or the inspiration to get them done?
Then here’s the secret, take time to get away, you’ll get more done. The key is to get out of your regular environment, and put yourself in a place where you can focus and be most productive without the usual distractions.
I do this regularly, when I have to focus on getting something done, I head straight to my favourite café. Now my usual environment is my home office and I Love my home, I have a great view across the rooftops in the valley and there are always our 2 miniature Schnauzers running around to keep me company and for day to day stuff that’s a great environment to work from, but when I need to focus or be creative… I head to the cafe.
I find the change of scenery and the hustle and bustle of a busy café stimulating and that allows me to focus and create and get things done a lot quicker, and dare I say it, better than if I stay at the home office to do it. So take yourself out of your usual environment and allow yourself the time to be creative and dream and then plan. As the saying goes, if you fail to plan – you plan to fail!
The people behind Salon Business Coach believe in helping people achieve, our passion is to see others succeed. Visit http://www.salonbusinesscoach.com to see if we’re a good fit for you and your business.