Does planning feel like a game of chess? You’re not sure what your next move should be? And no matter what move you make you wonder if you’re walking into a trap! You’ve completed your plans for 2018 in a neat document and it’s filed away on your computer unopened ever since. Day to day stuff has now taken over and you’re busy working away. Here are 5 moves to help you to learn to live your planning.

1. Plan it!

  • Set aside time once a month to review your planning docs.
  • The end of the month is a good time as you can review progress for that month.
  • Put it in your diary at a time that suits you and block off the time.
  • Treat it as an appointment with yourself.
  • Make it a regular date, e.g. last Friday of the month at 3pm.

2. Review your sales

  • Fill in your sales planning doc with the sales for this month.
  • Did you meet/miss/exceed your targets?
  • Why?
  • Will his effect your sales for next month? If so adjust them.
  • Does this effect your buying for next month?

3. Review your finances

  • At a minimum, review your cash flow to date and forecast.
  • Review your income and expenses docs making sure all is accounted for.
  • Review your monthly management accounts, if you have them.
  • Book a call with your accountant to discuss any issues.
  • Use this real time information to help with your sales planning as above.

4. Review any other key metrics for your business

  • What is key for your business?
  • Other key metrics could be:
    • Online sales
    • Stock inventory levels
    • Staffing numbers vs sales levels
    • Sales per sq. ft.
    • Average Transaction Value
    • Social media engagement
    • Customer Relationship Management

5. Plan Review Do

I love this image because it is so simple. This circular action shows the ongoing process of planning and how it is not a stand-alone activity. It is only effective when you review your plans and then put the outcome of that review into practice.

I hope this has been helpful to you. Writing about it has made me think again about my own planning and review process. I will be making my appointment with myself to work ON my business as well as IN my business.

Happy retailing!



Please follow and like us: