Beyond the Noise: Clearing the Path for Business Success in 2024

As we gear up for the festive season, I’m taking a moment to share some thoughts on how you can make the most of the holiday downtime to think about your business. We’re talking about a little reflection, a bit of reading, and some strategic planning—all in simple, actionable steps.

I often find the best time is when you’re not “up to your eyeballs in it” and the Christmas/New Year period is often a good time to reflect on the previous year and to start setting goals and plans for 2024.

To that end, here are a couple of suggestions that you might find useful.


1. Journal Your Way to Clarity

Grab an A5 or A4 journal (plain pages – with or without lines). This isn’t your typical diary for daily activities (“Dear Diary, today we went to the movies…” as much fun as that would be) – it’s about having a place for you to write your ideas, thoughts, concepts, issues and plans for your business and life. Trust me, it’s a game-changer.

2. Recommended Read: “The Road Less Stupid”

Looking for a thought-provoking read? Check out “The Road Less Stupid” by Keith J. Cunningham. It’s a straightforward guide to quality thinking about crucial business matters. The book starts off by talking about how you set up a time and place for quality thinking but the real value comes in subsequent chapters.

Keith Cunningham cleverly poses a series of questions for contemplation on a variety of topics. Chapters can be read independently of the other and in no particular order. It is a great book available on both hardcover and kindle versions (you can read it on your phone, computer and/or tablet). Take notes in your journal, and let the ideas percolate.

3. Write Yourself a Letter from the Future

Here’s a simple yet powerful exercise. In your journal, set a date 3 to 5 years ahead and write a letter to yourself. Describe your business and life in vivid detail, as if it’s already happened. Talk about how it’s grown and what you have achieved. Be specific and detailed. It’s a personal exercise meant for your eyes only, but the impact can be profound. (If you don’t believe how powerful this can be, let me tell you about my experience at a future meeting).

4. Craft Your 2024 Plans

Let’s talk about planning for the future. Depending on your planning cycle, this could mean a full Annual Operating Plan for 2024 or just a quick update. Check out these handy templates for 90-day Plans and an Annual Operating Plan:

Make notes, set goals, and keep them in your journal for easy reference.

5. Run Some Diagnostics

Take a moment to run some diagnostics on various aspects of your business and life by using our free Diagnostics. There are about 20 Diagnostics that cover a range of topics from Growth and Profits to Life Balance. Each uses a similar structure of 25+ questions (no commercially sensitive information provided) to give you a score on 6-10 key factors, highlighting strengths and weaknesses. Assess the results and summarise your thoughts in your Journal. Use them as a foundation for building your 2024 plans.

A Proactive Start to 2024

As we close the chapter on 2023, let’s use the holiday break to our advantage. Whether it’s through journaling, reading, envisioning the future, planning strategically, or running diagnostics, these simple steps can pave the way for a purposeful and successful 2024.

Got questions or thoughts to share? Leave a comment below.

Wishing you and your family a happy, safe and healthy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.



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