Most agencies are about to walk into 2019 without a plan. Your business plan doesn’t have to be the Mona Lisa of plans — we’ve designed a simple, one-page business plan that will have you heading to an amazing 2019. It’s yours for the taking — so don’t go in blind. Go in with an actionable, manageable plan!
Hey! Drew McLellan here from Agency Management Institute. I'm coming to you this week from Denver, Colorado. This is my last business trip of 2018. And you know what that means. It means 2019 is right around the corner. And, you know, many of us as agency owners and leaders have been having a lot of conversations with our clients about their goals for 2019. We preach to our clients that they need to have a marketing plan and marketing budget. We beg them for the goals that are going really define whether or not their businesses have success in the coming year. And we remind them that it's pretty hard to help them get to their destination if we have no idea what the destination is. We know how important planning is, and we preach it to our clients every day. And yet the reality is most agencies are lousy at planning for their own agency. Maybe we set a gross revenue or gross billings goal or maybe we have an AGI goal. But beyond that, what we often don't do are have all of the elements inside a plan that matter. We don't have smart goals. We don't share the plan with the rest of the leadership team and assign out responsibilities. We don't prioritize the goals and tackle them one at the time. We certainly don't build an action plan that defines who's going do what when to make those goals a reality. And most agencies do not allocate a budget or resources to help make those goals become a reality. Or there are a few agencies that go the far other end of the extreme. So what they do is they build the Mona Lisa of business plans every year. It is in a three-ring binder. It is beautiful. It has graphs and it goes right on the bookshelf, and it's not referred to all year long. I think there's a happy medium. And in fact, we designed a happy medium specifically for agencies. And it comes as a one-two punch. Number one, the most important thing that an agency has to do is it has to help the owner of the agency accomplish their life goals. There is no reason to take the risk of owning an agency if you also don't get out of it what you wanna get out of it. So the first document we have is an agency owner life plan. What it will do in one page is help you define, why are you doing this? Why are you running an agency? What do you want to get out of your life, and is the agency supporting that? The second document in the one-two punch is a one-page business plan specifically written for agencies. What it's going do is it's going ask you to prioritize the biggest things in some key categories, like leadership, finance, systems and processes, client growth, those sort of things. It's going ask you to prioritize the one thing you can do at each of those categories to change the trajectory of your agency to accomplish your goals. Then it's going ask you a couple questions about each of those goals. And then, and this is critical, it's going ask you to rank those goals so that rather than trying to do all of them at once, which by the way means they're all gonna get about 73% done, it's going ask you to rank those goals so that you can tackle one goal at a time until you get that first goal done and then go on to the second and the third. And if you follow this very simple methodology, you share it with the leadership team as part of your regular meetings, you are holding each other accountable to getting it done. I think you're going be surprised at what happens, what you're looking at in terms of your agency success and growth a year from now, in December of 2019. If you want both of these documents, go to AgencyManagementInstitute.com/Planning. You don't have to give us your email address. You don't have to do anything. Go ahead and download that. And if you want more instruction on how to do them, they're pretty self-explanatory, but you can also go to our podcast archive page. You can go to episode number 10 where I outline exactly how to use both of these tools to take your agency where you wanna go. I really hope that you take advantage of these tools. I hope you set yourself up for success in 2019. I'll be back next week. Talk to you then.