We're in the last little stretch of 2013 now. November and December always seem to go by quickly, so I've been thinking lately about closing out the year (in terms of writing) and preparing for 2014.
I'm excited about 2014. I have big plans for my career in freelancing as well as fiction, and I know that planning ahead will help me achieve the goals I've set for myself, and pushing ahead to bigger and better things for my family and myself.
So as I'm getting my paperwork organized to file away for 2013, I'm looking ahead to my business plan, goals, and expectations for 2014. What do I want to change? What should stay the same? How can I make sure that 2014 is a better year than 2013 was?
Over the next two months, I'm going to take some time to finalize my 2014 business plan. Having a written plan helps me stay focused on what I want to accomplish, and it allows me to take what's there to write actionable goals for each month as we go through the year. Plus, it reminds me that my work is a legitimate business and not just a hobby or something I do only for fun.
When you're self-employed, having a business plan year-to-year helps you keep track of what you have to do each month. For example, when I set my goal for my 2014 income, I'll be able to break that down into a monthly income, a weekly income, and a daily income, so I'll know exactly how much work I need to do each day to hit my goal. The same is true with bringing in new clients. If I want to sign (for example) twelve new clients in 2014, I know I need to sign at least one every month.
Then, at the end of each month, I'll compare what I did with what my goals/expectations were so I can evaluate how the year is going and make any changes that are needed.
Do you have a business plan in mind for next year? What are your personal and professional goals for 2014?