Build up your business, Part 1 of 3

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Looking to make your business more efficient, cost-effective, and profitable? Do you need help with planning and goal-setting to set that growth in motion? If so, then this series is for you! Beginning with this weeks’ post, I will cover the three major steps you need to take your business to the next level, along with selected resources to help you execute each step.

What's the plan?Build up your business, Part 1: Developing a Plan of Action

Before you begin a new business, an overhaul of your existing business, or any new project really, you need to know what your objectives are and what results you desire. Set specific goals, so you know what you’re aiming for and what steps you need to take to get there.

Here are some helpful articles and worksheets for goal-setting:
SMART Goal Setting worksheet
The Ten Commandments of Goal Setting
How to Set Business Goals

Once you have your goals in place, you can determine the actions you’ll need to take to reach them. This is where your business plan comes in: if you already have one, then now is the time to re-evaluate and update it to reflect your newly set goals. If you’ve never had a business plan, now is the time to write one! Your business plan doesn’t have to be long or complex, especially if you’re a small business owner, so don’t be discouraged from creating a plan because you assume it has to be ten pages long – it can be as short and sweet as you would like it to be.

Check out these resources for creating and updating your business plan:
One-Day Business Plan Worksheet
Business Plan Template from the U.S. Small Business Administration (pdf)
Updating Your Business Plan
How to Update a Business Plan

→Stay tuned for Part 2: Enhance your brand, coming next week!

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About Barbara Austin

As the graphic designer & founder of Sweet Dreamz Design, Barbara loves working with women entrepreneurs to brand their businesses. She shares a variety of small business advice and anecdotes here on the blog. Check back every week for new tips, inspirations, and how-to articles, or subscribe to get regular updates in your inbox each week!

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