Internet Business: Be Smart In Your Planning Strategy


There are many intangible benefits to being in business for yourself. The satisfaction of controlling your own fate, deciding your destiny and other emotional and spiritual "perks" are good reasons to be the boss. These qualities have nothing to do with the "meat" of a business plan, however. They really cannot be measured. A plan requires measurable actions and results over time.

To describe the important parts, the acronym SMART covers the main points:

- Specific
- Measurable
- Actionable
- Realistic
- Timed

Specific means definite. You really can't measure "vague". Getting specific when crafting your plan will allow you to define what you need to watch (and change when necessary). The more specific you can become in describing and tracking your business methods and practices, the more likely it is that you'll uncover hidden profits and potential losses before they happen. This means you can create more income and save more money than if you left such things to chance.

Measurable goals and targets can be managed. Without a standard of measurement, you can't bake a good cake or mix color for a painting reliably. The result will be different each time, instead of predictable, repeatable and reliable. Knowing the standards for your particular business and using them will give you control over the whole process of doing your business.

Sometimes, you can measure something, but you can't do anything about it. An actionable metric is one where you can change, tweak, modify or swap it with something else when it doesn't work. For example, there are only so many hours in a day. The amount of work that one person can do in that time will end up being a fixed amount, depending upon how the work is done. By examining the processes of that particular job and identifying the parts that can be improved, an actionable change can be implemented to increase productivity and output.

Goals need to be realistic. Too often, people overestimate how much they can do in a month and underestimate how much they can do in a year. By carefully examining how much and how fast you can increase income, ramp up production and cut the cost of producing output over time, you may actually surprise yourself with how quickly (or slowly) you could reach a goal point in time.

This brings us to "timed". There's no motive to work hard if your goal is to make a million dollars - eventually. An income of $25,000 over 40 years equals $1,000,000. Setting goals that are realistic and a bit bold can be the best way to reach them. Being overly enthusiastic regarding goals can be bad for your attitude and your business. Increasing your revenue by $500,000 by the end of next week would be unrealistic. Setting a goal to double your income every three months for the next two years may be doable and practical, assuming the rest of your plan can support such growth.

Once you begin to apply these principles to your plan, a pattern will emerge. You'll begin to see where the "bottlenecks" are that hold you back from increasing your effectiveness. Opportunities to increase your revenue will appear in places you might not have noticed, had you not applied a sound method of measuring all you could in a practical way.

Regular reviews of your business plan will permit you to modify your goals, identify problems before they grow too large and direct your strategy for the future. Being familiar with the five "spokes" of this wheel will keep you rolling along towards your goals with a minimum of friction and flat tires!

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Jo Han Mok is the author of the #1 international business bestseller, The E-Code. He shares his amazing blueprint for creating million dollar internet businesses at:

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