By Kaylee Lauriel, PR Intern
Rome wasn’t built in a day. Rome also wasn’t built without a plan. Planning is essential to almost every human activity. Do you need to go to the grocery store? Okay, first write your list, then grab your keys, then get in the car, and so on. Are you going to start a new project around the house? Not without a plan you’re not.
Planning is not only meant for general ideas, but also for every aspect of your company. Planning is important for marketing, social media, video content and more. For instance, companies research tirelessly to analyze their consumers and find out how to best appeal to them. Once they have their research, they formulate a plan to attract potential buyers and tailor a marketing campaign around that plan.
Here are five reasons why planning is one of the most important things you can do.
#1) Plans help you set appropriate goals
The whole point in doing anything is to accomplish a goal. Creating a plan helps you determine if your goal is realistic or not. After you develop your plan, you may discover that you have to refine your goal a little bit to make it more achievable.
Use the acronym S.M.A.R.T. – Smart, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-bound – to decide whether or not your goals are achievable and adjust as needed.
#2) Plans help you reveal strengths and weaknesses
In order to develop a plan, you have to look at it from every possible angle. This is where you will notice the strengths and weaknesses of your plan and, while no one likes to see a weakness in their idea, this is essential to planning. Without dissecting your plan’s weaknesses, you may end up steamrolling ahead and sabotaging yourself. Notice your weaknesses and adjust accordingly.
#3) Plans increase your efficiency, confidence and credibility
Efficiency is the goal in everything you do. Plans will help you manage time, talent and money. A project may not entirely fail with poor planning, but it will use more resources than necessary to complete. Along with increasing efficiency, planning will increase your confidence. Well thought out plans boost your confidence, and boosted confidence means an increase in certainty. Creating plans, especially when working in a group, is a great way to earn credibility. A strong plan will establish your credibility among your team and push you into a place of leadership.
#4) Plans reduce risk
You’ll never be able to predict the future, but you can prepare for it. A good plan prepares for risk and uncertainty so that, if you come across a roadblock, you are ready to deal with it and continue on the path towards your goal.
#5) Plans encourage peace of mind
Perhaps most importantly, plans relieve stress. Planning alleviates a lot of uncertainty in the future and lends to your confidence. You will feel much better knowing that you have thought through every possible scenario and have discussed the pros and cons. Stress will be present, but never overwhelming with a strong plan.
Not planning or poor planning can lead to poor management of time, money and other resources that could have been allotted elsewhere. Beyond affecting yourself with your lack of planning, you can impact those around you and the brand you represent. You could hurt not only your reputation, but the reputation of your company as a whole.
The planning process is vital to any project you will take on, whether it is personal or for your company. Take it seriously and don’t cut corners, because the last thing I’d want to say is “I told you so.” Remember these five tips for planning, and your next project will be a breeze.