I was asked by many of my friends and family, why I started a business. My response to them was:
I have a dream. The dream that I can become the person I always wanted to become.
When I was a kid and a teenager, I was really shy, to the point that I was un-noticed by people surrounding me, students, neighbours, name it.
Becoming an adult was a relief for me. Actually, becoming a mother was a big change in my life. For the first time, I had to take care of people who needed me to take care of them, my children. That’s when I started to talk and fight for their rights. I became more engaged in the community, at school and, for my son, with the health system.
It’s always interesting how events in life can change someone. For me, it was for the better. I became more assured about my capacities. I was surprised that people started seeing me as a reference, as someone who could be their spokeperson for certain causes, such as autism.
At work, the transformation was the same, I went from an employee to a team lead, to a manager, to an advisor. I became a reference there too.
I can truly say that I am growing older but smarter.
But I wanted my dream to come true
I wanted to work for myself. Be my own boss. But we all know that this is not enough to become one. You need that desire, it is the fuel to your business, and you also need some tools. Again, I was lucky that many of my work involved, planning and project management.
That gave me the tools to activate my dream of becoming an entrepreneur.
What I learned over the year…
As a planner and project manager, I learned about having a vision, a mission and goals, that will then be used to draft an action plan.
You need a Vision
A vision is a clear, comprehensive picture in the future of what you want your business to become. It provides direction because it tells you what your business needs to be like to be successful in the future. As Yogi Berra said:
If you don’t know where you are going, you probably aren’t going there.
A vision is what you want to become. For example, Google’s vision statement is
“to provide access to the world’s information in one click.”
You need a Mission
The mission of a business is what it is all about. Again, Google’s mission statement is
“to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
You need Goals
Goals are actually how you are going to reach your mission and your vision. From the goals, you will be able to draw an action plan.
What is an Action Plan?
An action plan is a document that lists what steps must be taken in order to achieve a specific goal.
An action plan identifies the business goal (what you would like to achieve) and the strategies that can be developed and implemented to reach that goal. It is broken down in specific tasks that will help you attain your goal. Each task will include the timeline and the resources needed for that specific task.
Dividing an action plan in tasks helps to break a project into smaller, more manageable goals.
There are many litterature on the net that can provide you with how to write a good action plan. You can do a Google search to find one that suits your needs.
A dream written down with a DATE becomes a goal.
A goal broken down into steps becomes a PLAN.
A plan backed by ACTION makes your dreams come true.
Also: If the plan doesn’t work, change the plan, but never the goal.
So don’t be afraid of making mistakes, be afraid of not taking action.