Being Clear on the Plan and Planning for Clarity

I was engaged in a thought-provoking conversation this morning with a business owner who had recently revived their tourism venture post-Covid. Their business had undergone significant changes, such as new staff, revamped systems, and altered partnerships. They were in the process of finding their footing once again. During our discussion, the business owner posed a crucial question: “What do you think are the most important actions I should be taking for the business right now?”

Here is the essence of my response:

Establish Clear Objectives:
It’s essential to have a well-defined plan. Clarity should be the cornerstone of your strategy. Regrettably, many tourism business owners, regardless of their segment, often overlook the significance of having a plan.

Plans can take various forms, such as a business plan, a strategic plan, a sales and marketing plan, or an operational plan.

The reason plans are so vital is that having something, even if it’s not perfect, is far superior to having nothing at all. The mere presence of a plan is a step in the right direction.

Utilise the Plan Effectively:
One common mistake I frequently encounter is when business operators claim they’re too busy to dedicate time to develop a plan or admit that their existing plan, created at great expense with the help of a consultant, has been neglected and left to gather dust in a drawer. It’s crucial to not only possess a plan but also to actively use it as a working document, drawing from it as an invaluable source of experience and guidance.

When I refer to a plan as a document, experience, and system, I emphasise that planning goes beyond merely putting words on paper or typing them up. To maximise the effectiveness of your plan, it must be tailored to suit your business, team, and owner. Additionally, it requires shared experiences that align everyone’s understanding and agreement with the plan. Equally important is establishing a system for ongoing utilisation of the plan, ensuring that all team members are committed to executing the plan, comprehending their roles, tasks, and responsibilities, and holding themselves accountable through regular follow-ups.

As we approach the end of the financial year, it’s beneficial to address the following key questions:
Have budgets for the 23/24 fiscal year been finalised?

  • Have budgets for the 23/24 fiscal year been finalised?
  • Are rate contracts or product tariffs being diligently worked on for the 24/25 year and appropriately distributed?
  • Have the quarterly goals been identified, ensuring that everyone is aware of the tasks required to conclude this quarter successfully and prepare for the next?
  • Is the team aligned, with a shared understanding of their roles within their respective departments and the entire business?
  • What risk management plans are in place to address challenges, opportunities, and potential adversities? Whether it’s dealing with floods, fires, an oversupply or scarcity of aviation resources, or the departure or illness of a key staff member, planning involves conducting a SWOT analysis and preparing for such contingencies.

By asking these questions, you can ensure that you’re actively working on your plan and avoiding the pitfalls of failing to plan, which can often be the downfall of businesses.

Take a moment to assess the state of planning within your business.


P.S Whenever you’re ready… here are 4 ways I can help you develop and work on your business leadership capabilities:

  1. Grab a free copy of Smash Indecision and Overwhelm, 4 Steps for Better Business Leadership E-book
    It’s the road map to overcoming doubt and indecision, how to deal with “overwhelm” to improve your business leadership capabilities. —Click Here
  2. Join the Tourism Business Leader’s Facebook group and connect with like-minded leaders focused on building highly effective teams
    It’s our Facebook community where smart leaders get to learn more about creativity, leadership and performance for tourism business success. —Click Here
  3. Join our Tourism Pro-Team Program
    Helping tourism business leaders develop their skills to improve engagement, accountability and performance of the team. If you’d like to work with me so you can stop being reactive, have the difficult conversations and drive performance to get the results you want and know the business need then…message PRO to me here and I’ll get you all the details.
  4. Let’s get the Whole Team Together
    Would you like a different perspective and someone else at the front of the room or on zoom/teams to lead regular and consistent team building, accountability, and engaging learning experiences, that drive results and outcomes for individuals, teams, and the business? If you feel a little challenged with everything going on, maybe sounding like a cracked recorded saying things repeatedly, or actually not 100% how to motivate and inspire the team, given the current nature of business, it may be useful for us to chat. Message TEAM to me here… and tell me a little about the business, your team, and what you’d like to work on together.

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