January 19, 2021

A Blueprint for Life

By Paul Daniels

When we start a new year, I always remember a professor I had in college that started his class talking about having a blueprint for life. The beginning of a new year is traditionally a time to make our personal New Year resolutions and for businesses to take the time to set their goals for the coming year.

What a lot of business do not do is follow up with a detailed blueprint on how to reach their goals. Just like in construction, you need more than a picture of the building to start the project.

If your business goal is to grow your business, you need to ask, “How are you going to accomplish this?” Do you want to add people or maybe a new truck to expand your business, or work on increasing margins? Are you going to add some new products to expand your business, or spend more money on marketing and advertising? To be successful you need to make a blueprint showing how to reach that goal. In my past life, we would take the time to think and plan how we were going to get there. My old boss used to say, “Thinking is the hardest part.” There are usually many ways to get there, but you need to spend the time putting together a detailed blueprint to follow.

Most of my sales life I have taken the time to build a blueprint to reach my goals. If my territory goal was to increase business 20%, I would spend the time to think of how I was going to get there. First, I would identify what accounts were looking to grow their business and make a blueprint to help them reach their goals. An example of this is a business I talked to recently that wants to add glass handrails to their product line this year. They need to make a blueprint of how to get there. They are currently comfortable working with heavy glass and tempered/laminated entrances and need to select a supplier that cannot only supply them with handrail products, but also technical support to help design code-compliant systems. Then they need to decide who will be in charge of the program in their business and how they will communicate this new service to their customers. The more detail they add to the blueprint, the higher the chance of success.

Building a blueprint to guide your business takes time, but time that will be well spent in helping you grow your business.