I have to admit, I should have written this post a few months ago, but still feel that it needs to be said now rather than waiting until next year. You may look at the title and be like “what, what, what??? How can I even think about my business goal setting and planning for next year during the main part of the wedding season this year?” Well, here is my reasoning why you should not only be thinking about it, but actually doing it. For most small businesses out there, they are about two-thirds through their business-getting year, which means they still have one-third of a year left to get more business. However, for most of us in the wedding industry, we already have almost all of our business for 2017 booked. Yes, we can still get those “last-minute” requests, but, let’s be honest, by this time in the year, we have a pretty good idea of the answer to the question, “how did my business do in 2017?”
Thus, knowing how this year is going to turn out, and knowing that the booking cycle for next year has definitely already begun, we should be writing our SMART business goals for 2018 and creating plans to achieve them right now, if we haven’t already done so. To wait until November or December, when things calm down, causes the plans we end up implementing to be more reactive than proactive. So, if you still need to write your business goals and supporting plans for 2018, my recommendation is to set a few hours a week aside, over the next few weeks, to write and begin implementing them, and then add it to your calendar to start 2019 goal setting earlier in 2018 (for example, start working on it in the beginning of May). If you are real-time, or even periodically, tracking your year-over-year inquiries, bookings, and cancellations numbers, you should have no problem creating business goals for the next year when you are only partway through the current year.
And, by having your plans for next year working mid-year this year, you also give yourself time to evaluate your progress and adjust the plans as necessary. The more time you give yourself, and the smoother you make the planning and implementation, the less stress and more success you will achieve. Of course, if I can help in any way with your goal setting and planning, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.