Don't just do it, plan it

April 15, 2011

The key success factor for turning ideas into reality is planning.

If you're like most people, you probably returned to your practice, you dumped your "show stuff" in a corner of the office, and you didn't have even 5 minutes to review all the great materials and notes you took. Even with the best intentions of getting around to looking at that pile, the sad-but-true fact is that only about 10% of any given audience actually acts on creating implementation strategies from any given learning experience.

There are lots of reasons for this. Some are: lack of time and or money, fear of change, not enough people, or the wrong people to make it happen. However, the biggest contributing factor to why most people never go from "dreamer" to "doer" is that they are overwhelmed and don't know where or how to start.

The following is a process to help vet ideas and concepts that will assure a much higher rate of implementation and success and lessen the risk and failure likelihood.

1. Perform an idea implementation assessment. Ask the hard questions before you invest any time or energy to the doing. As a total practice team, discuss every new concept using the suggested questions here. (Note: This process example is for an initiative to increase revenue by adding in either new product or service categories).

Once you thoroughly vet the idea, you're halfway through the planning. The next step is the who, what, where, when, and how of the plan. Create the action plan to implement your strategy.

2. Action planning. Put together a comprehensive plan on all the to-dos (list out all steps in the process of adding/expanding a service or product category, list the timeline and person assigned to each step, as well as marketing/merchandising tactics).