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How to Structure Strategic Planning for 2019

Whether you’re running an event agency, managing projects or have just started your career, a strategic plan for 2019 will help you achieve your goals with clarity and decisiveness. Work life often has an ebb and flow to it. It can be very easy to forget goals in the stress of a busy period and then continue to forget those goals into the slow period. Even if you don’t have to plan to get funding approval, or to outline your departments yearly strategy, making yourself a 2019 strategy plan will keep you motivated during the slow period and help you finish this year with successes to boast about.

Reflect on what did and didn’t work over 2018

Spend some time looking over any plans you did manage to accomplish throughout 2018. Objectively evaluate the evidence of how your strategies worked. Anything that worked, keep. Be careful to look at variables. For example, if a project crashed and burned, is that because a coordinator with a penchant for overspending was working on it, or because you were sick that week and found it hard to keep everything running? Question some of the results so you have a holistic understanding of your own analytics.

What plans and goals did you set yourself last year that didn’t happen?

This is different from figuring out what did and didn’t work. What plans didn’t happen at all? Can these lost plans make a difference in 2019 if executed properly?

For example, if you’re an event planner and you came up with an innovative idea that your client rejected, can that idea be recycled in 2019? If you believe in your concept, and your team believed in the concept, it doesn’t have to die on an uneventful day mid-2018. While you’re building your 2019 folder, put the lost concepts in there so that you have a file of quick fire ideas next time you’re in a relevant pitch meeting.

What else didn’t happen? Would better planning have brought unlived plans into fruition? If you planned to post every day on social media, what prevented that? Even if you don’t see an answer to last year’s strategic blocks, write the reason down. It’s easier to tackle a problem if you see it in writing. Bring these plans back and evaluate their relevancy and potential effectiveness for 2019. It’s often said that the success of a start-up isn’t dependent on how original the idea is, but on the execution. Just because your plans didn’t happen in 2018, doesn’t mean they can’t happen this year.

Set yearly, quarterly and monthly goals now

In a dream world, what would you like to achieve by the end of 2019. Write that down.

If you had to split that goal into four parts, what would they consist of? Write that down.

How would you achieve those four parts in monthly bite size chunks? Write that down.

Create 2019’s diary now, complete with personal and work deadlines

It’s very common for people to buy a diary in January and never use it beyond February. It can be hard to find time to manage entries and sometimes a handwritten journal can become more stressful than useful. What a lot of journals are missing is the simplicity, flexibility and ease of an spreadsheet.

Type diary into Excel’s templates and use the provided format to set yourself a year’s worth of deadlines and tasks. Whether or not you follow the plan, having a week by week guide outlining how you’re going to achieve your goals will keep you grounded throughout the year. Creating personal deadlines will help you stay focused. Inevitably, a lot of things are going to change, and your work schedule can become quite hectic, but the Excel sheet can change with you.

Blogs to help get you organised

Did you find your year was a little too unorganised? If so, read our blog on how project process automation software can help reduce cortisol levels by organising and automating your work structure.

Or, if you run an event agency, did you find that any of your event budgets overran? Read about how budgeting software for event agencies increases profit.

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