It’s a gorgeous and sunny day as I write this. I would like to be outside, maybe grilling up some steaks and drinking a beer or 12. But I’m working because that’s the plan. I have a short window of time to get a bunch of things done before I hit the road again, and because part of my business is to create media, that means writing and creating information that might be useful to you. Work the plan. That’s the message of the day.
Work the Plan
My media plan says I should be writing one of six types of posts:
- How to
- Do it Better
In this case, I’ll call this post a “how-to.” It’s not the best I’ve ever written, especially because it’s so self-referential, but it proves the point.
If your goal is to reach into the heads of the people you hope to reach, you’d best have a plan. If your goal is to make money, and this digital strategy is part of the plan, then what are you doing to stick to it?
We Fall Off Plan Easily
The moment things get busy, we throw away those parts of our plan that are the hardest to do, or the ones that take the most thought. We all do this. That’s not just you. But that means we have to work even harder at keeping to our plan.
You know what should be part of every day? A reminder to be courteous and “with our customer.” Have you ever had a frowning busy waitress at a restaurant? She’s not there with you, and as such, you feel less important, less seen, and less cared for. And yet, that’s rarely part of our plan. Nando Caban-Mendez said that his mentor taught him to create what the mentor called “green blocking,” which was actual scheduled time to connect with people and give that personal touch. I love that. Look at how simply that adds this into the plan.
When You Get Off Plan? Get Back On.
One thing I really like about #12in12 is that Jacq built it with a “let’s get right back on plan” mindset. There’s no guilt. There’s no “well, it’s ruined now.” You just start again. Day one. Get back on it.
Plans and What You Write Down and What You Schedule
I don’t care what you use for scheduling and to-dos, but if you don’t have a synergy between what you say your plans are and what’s written into your calendar and your to-dos, then it’s not going to happen. My plan for today said, “Write next week’s newsletter, three blog posts, and then clear up your inbox.” I am ticking those items off one at a time. What’s missing from today’s plan is all the client work, which happens tomorrow, and it’s on that plan. I’m going to add those green blocks (thanks, Nando!). What’s on my schedule is what’s in my plan. Are you doing it?
It’s okay to have room for spontaneity. It’s okay to believe in serendipity. But if you’re looking to “go pro,” that doesn’t happen by chance. Plan it out. Work that plan.