5 Steps to Planning an Amazing Business and an Amazing Life

You can plan an amazing business and an amazing life in just 5 steps.

Step 1: Create a dynamic vision. A fantasy. A big dream. A big hairy audacious goal. You are within an hour drive of $250 million to a couple billion dollars in business (promotional products, printing and packaging). Let me encourage you to develop a vision for your business and your life that may even be beyond your understanding of exactly how to accomplish it. Dreams are free. Why not dream big?

Step 2: Know why you want to accomplish your vision. Most of us know how to grow our sales. Most of us know how to make more money. What I find most people lack is not knowing “how.” They lack knowing “why.” Only when you know why you want to achieve your big dream will you really fully engage in the pursuit.

Step 3: Identify which combination of business growth activities you want to focus on to grow your business. There are only four activities that will grow your business:

  1. Earn new customers.
  2. Sell more to your current customers.
  3. Hire and manage salespeople or account managers. (For business owners only.)
  4. Buy your competition. (For business owners only.)

Step 4: Create goals. Activity and pipeline goals. Understand that the only two things that matter in growing sales are activity and pipeline. That’s it. Activity and pipeline. Here are the 5 sections of activity goals:

  1. Goals for earning new customers.
  2. Goals for selling more to your current customers.
  3. Goals for hiring and managing sales reps or account managers. (For business owners only.)
  4. Goals for buying your competition. (For business owners only.)
  5. Goals for delegating everything else that isn’t one of the above 4 activities.

The specific goals for each of the first four above activities are very similar.

  1. Identify prospects
  2. Warm them up
  3. Schedule a first appointment
  4. Conduct a great first appointment
  5. Learn about opportunities
  6. Follow up

Step 5: Create strategies to accomplish each of the above goals. For example, how will you identify prospects? What marketing tools will you use to warm them up? How will you schedule appointments? What do you need to conduct a great first appointment? What methods and timing will you use to continue to follow up?

That’s it. It’s that simple to have a plan. Of course there can be as much detail as you want to add. Perhaps, more details about the size or types of customers, reps or acquisitions you want to pursue, or different methods for identifying prospects and warming them up. Of course, you also want to create a simple pipeline tool to measure the results of your activities.

Keep it simple. Remember only activity and pipeline matter. You’re on your way. Good luck and enjoy your journey.

Read past articles in Greg’s Million Dollar Mindset at Promo Marketing Magazine

AboutGreg Muzzillo, Founder of Proforma

Greg Muzzillo started Proforma as an industry distributor in 1978. The company grew quickly and in the early 1980s Proforma was recognized for three consecutive years on Inc. magazine’s list of the 500 fastest growing companies in North America. In the late 1980’s Proforma introduced its membership program to enable distributors to retain their business ownership and independence, and to share in sales and marketing resources, purchasing power with industry suppliers, one back office including all billing, accounting, vendor payments, cash flow, computer systems and more. Today Proforma has more than 750 members with over $500 million in sales. Proforma has over 100 members in its Million Dollar Club and more than 40 members in its Multi-Million Dollar Club (With sales ranging from $2 million to over $26 million). In 2014, eight Proforma members were named to Inc. magazine’s Inc. 5000 List of the 5000 Fastest Growing Companies.

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