Plan + Process = Profit

“We gotta have a plan.  Why?  So we can change the plan!”  This is frequently said in my office, usually by me.  Everything we do in life usually starts with some sort of a plan.  If you have been reading recent posts you can tell that all three of us are very plan oriented.  It helps with organization and efficiency and your whole team (family) knows what they need to do as it fits into the overall.  Then you need to have the process in place to execute your plan.  When you have both of these working together the end result is profit.

Let’s break this down into it’s parts.
Plan – from a scheme or method of acting, doing, proceeding, making, etc., developed in advance.  You design and put into place the blueprint for your project.  We have a plan for educating our children, for saving for retirement, for going on vacation.  I could go on and on.  For most of us we all start with a basic plan that evolves and grows as we go through the project.  The plan has the stated goals.  Let’s look at our three examples.
  • Quality education Kindergarten through college with enough money set aside for my children to go to the best school possible
  • Save enough money to retire at age 55 and be able to do my own business and live in a warm weather state
  • Travel to Ireland for a month to research my family ancestry and do immersion learning of the Gaelic language
These all start in way in advance of the actual event.  One doesn’t just decide to retire and “hope” there’s money to live on for the rest of their lives.  With each of these plans you break it down into more detail for each so that there is a clear picture how and what you are looking to accomplish.  In short this is the ‘WHAT”. 
Process – from a systematic series of actions directed to some end.  Now you need to determine what steps are needed, who all is involved and the timeframe/deadlines to accomplish the plan.   Let’s go back to our examples.
  • Review the appropriate schools based on child’s age, start savings acct for each each child at birth, encourage & promote good study habits, college visits, fill out scholarship applications.  
  • Start saving a minimum of 10% into a 401k account when you get your 1st job, save additional 10% for savings account and investment fund, spend less than you make, take advantage of employer’s 401k match program if available.
  • Choose date to travel, research places to stay and airfare, request time off from work, research family information on, book air and hotel accommodations, contact genealogy specialist in Ireland and make arrangements to meet.
As you can see we are now creating all the details and steps needed to make each of these a reality.  This is the “HOW”.
Profit – advantage; benefit; gain.  So often we get caught up thinking that profit is only the dollars flowing into our checking account but it is so much more.  And many times the profit is the unexpected good things that can come out of our initial goal.  These can be new opportunities, connections, capabilities and of course  added value in our paychecks.
Let’s see what the profit might be for our three examples.
  • Your child attends the best schools throughout their life, gaining valuable knowledge and experience which enables them to start their own successful company
  • At age 55 (or sooner!) you have the funds necessary to “retire” and start your own business, making your own hours and being able to live where you choose (warm weather here you come!).  You are able to make a difference in the lives of those around you as you teach, motivate and encourage others. You are now making more money doing what you love.
  • The experience of the month long trip has renewed your energy, exposed you to a new culture, music, language and ideas, you have made new life long friends and found long lost relatives.  You come back to the US with a renewed sense of spirit and family.
So much of what can be Profit is way beyond the dollars initially but can greatly influence and impact your economic situation (and those around you).  With a well thought out Plan with an easy to execute Process the Profit that you see at the end can continue to pay dividends into the next generation!
What’s your Plan and Process?  How so you use them in your life?  And what Profit has been most unexpected for you when you used a Plan and Process?

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