The First of Three Questions to Ask When Creating a Plan


There are three separate questions that one must answer in detail before moving forward with not only creating, but also executing a plan. A careful and honest look at the answers to these questions will serve as the details and building blocks for your plan.

Let’s focus on the first question for the actual creation of a plan using the example, of a plan to start a business.

The first question is: Where Are You Now? It is absolutely necessary to examine what condition, type of situation(s), and state of mind you are currently in before attempting to move forward. Locating yourself requires turning inward, examining the heart, and your way of thinking in order to discover the many things that may compliment or challenge your decision. This will allow one to know how much work it will take in order to reach the goal that has been set.

How do you find where you are in this process? Discovering this means carefully considering a few things, such as the level of knowledge you have, your current physical, mental, and financial position, and your current skill set or lack thereof as it pertains to the goal.

There are a few other areas to factor in when asking the question of “where are you now?” In line with that question, also ask yourself how much knowledge do you have concerning the business you want to start? How much time do you have to dedicate to starting and running a new business? These questions will help to figure out not only where you are, but exactly where you must start.

  • Consider all the major components of where your life currently is before putting together your plan. Physically you may be working a job that takes up the majority of your time, so that is something to think about when developing a plan. Figuring out when you will be available to work on your goal and implement your plan is very important. Once you answer these questions, then you will know what the beginning steps to accomplishing your plan should be. While answering these questions, if you discover that you don’t know much about the business/industry you are going into, then getting that knowledge should be one of the beginning steps. Learning the details about the business you want to start now becomes one of the first priorities on your action plan.
  • Finances may be another aspect to consider when you think about where you are right now. How much will it take to start a business of this type? What type of budget do you currently have? Will you be dependent upon getting business loans from a bank or investors in order to have money for your up-front expenses? What type of start-up expenses will there be? If you have no clue, then financial research will be another item to include in your action plan.

These first steps help determine where you should start concerning the plan. This is where practice makes perfect because right now I know your strategic mind may be saying this is all so much to consider, but this is what great strategy is all about. During this time, you are exercising your strategic mind because you have to consider all of the angles. This level of prepping, planning, and looking at all of the details is what great strategy consists of.

  • Thinking in great detail and using mental strategy is not normally taught. So when you first begin to think in-depth on this level, your thoughts are everywhere. It can even be a bit stressful or frustrating to start. But as you go along it becomes easier to see the specifics and break things down so each move that you make is a successful one.