I’m looking out my window and it’s raining. Seems like as good a time as any to begin a blog about Rainmaking! Particularly as the end of the year is quickly approaching and many of us are thinking about a few things related to Rainmaking. Can you relate to any of these?
- Here it is, almost the end of the year, and you didn’t hit your revenue numbers! Well, that’s not a fun one to start with, but in the spirit of always keeping ourselves accountable, it’s a good time to ask where it went off track. Was your number unrealistic from the beginning? Did you get off to a slower start than you wanted to, and now you can’t make it up anymore in these last few weeks of the year? Were there things that happened beyond your control that kept you from achieving your goal? It’s generally a combination of those things. But one of the biggest reasons for not reaching the sales or revenue goal is taking our eye off the numbers, and relatedly, not keeping accountable monthly. Every year, I like to set my goals for next year right about this time of year, and then also set mini goals for next year – by each quarter and even each month, so we’re ready to go by January 1. And during the year, I’m constantly evaluating them. So, I’m excited to say that I DID hit my numbers this year. In fact, we achieved the 2017 revenue goal today with a signed engagement letter from our newest client. How do I know? I have a spreadsheet that counted down from my 2017 revenue goals, and essentially filled up the proverbial thermometer with every new client. Today’s engagement letter put us over the top – thermometer full!
- 2017 was a good year – it’s ready to plan for 2018! You already know I met my 2017 revenue goal, and now 2018 is a blank slate. If you follow my blogs, you know I’m a big believer in setting goals, and even stretch goals. Next year’s growth goals are already taking shape in my head. The next step is to put them on paper and see if they still seem realistic, and if so to set an actionable plan to achieve them. Establish your “wish list” number for revenue and then determine how to get there. Set your sights high, but be realistic. Ask yourself if you’ll need additional resources to help you reach the goal. That could come in the form of new employees or by engaging some third party resources. It could come from finally hiring that outside sales person. Also, while you’re planning your top line growth, don’t forget to look at the expense side of your ledger as well. Are there costs you incurred in 2017 that you don’t need to incur in 2018? OR, are there some areas where you need to allocate a few additional costs. (Yup – keep reading!)
- How can you do more with the resources you already have? Have you been wanting to add blogging to your repertoire because you think it’ll make you more visible in the marketplace, but consistently over the years haven’t found the time to do it? Is it finally time to refresh your website or maybe overhaul it completely? Is it time to add video? These are all examples of indirect strategies that I’ve blogged about before. They are ways to enhance your Rainmaking, in addition to doing the direct, one-on-one relationship building. If you feel that building your presence this way is important (and for many of us, it is!) what are you going to do differently this year to make that happen? Are you going to promise to carve out time on Saturdays to finally write those blogs or articles? Will you stay up late to post on social media? I’ll just ask you – how’s that working for you? If it is, go for it! But if not, consider enlisting some support. There are many people (and even some technology solutions out there) that can help with this. I don’t write every one of my state tax blogs. I get some help. (I do write all the Rainmaking blogs – but they are more monthly or infrequent.) Same with social media. It’s important that we are “out there”, but there may not be enough hours in the day to get out there! I challenge you to think differently about how you might do some of these things in the new year.
- Sounds good, but it’s all a little overwhelming! Could you use some additional tips or ideas on how to put your 2018 plan together? Do you need a good way to start? I hope you’ll join me for my year end “Jumpstart Your Rainmaking” webinar series, beginning December 7th. Check it out here. We’ll help you get started on building your plan for 2018, so you’ll be ready to go by January 1. Prior participants have included attorneys, CPAs, realtors, and small business owners, among others. And we’ve helped to launch some pretty good plans and then help people stay accountable throughout the year.
I’d love the opportunity to assist you as you set your goals. To find out more, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org