Are you tired of not getting the results you’re after?

Do you feel like you’re treading water in your business rather than creating a real difference out there?

Do you want more for your business in 2016/17?

I believe that you can run your business with a focus and drive towards success in a way that also reflects your personal style, passion and values.

This belief underpins why I created the Castle in the Sky Visual Plan.  But primarily I did it to fix one of my own problems. Let me tell you the story of how it came about, the results it created for me, and more importantly how you can also create one for your business this coming financial year.

Inner Creative Castle in the Sky Visual Plan Workshop 22 July 2016

As a part-time business owner, I was tired of having over a hundred things on my ‘to do’ list and feeling that they were all important. I wanted to make sure that I was working on the right things that would bring me success and not waste my time on the nice, but not essential, tasks. I also wanted to quickly refer to my business goals to keep myself on track without having to shuffle through my business plan saved somewhere on my computer.

So a year ago I sat down and used what I know about strategic planning to develop an action plan for my business, but I expressed it in a creative way. I used colour, imagery and metaphor to tap into my big picture, expansive thinking processes to create a one A3 page Visual Plan for my business for the coming year. I’m not sure why, but I imagined the vision for my business as a castle in the sky and that I was like Jack in the Beanstalk standing at the bottom of the beanstalk wondering how I was going to get to that castle. You can see it here.
Inner Creative Castle in the Sky Visual Plan

What I love about this Visual Plan is that it lets me express my big picture vision, set one big headline goal to focus on in the year, as well as group all of my actions under some key strategies – all on the one page!

This Visual Plan was also something that I could easily display on my office wall. It was a lot nicer and more inspiring to look at than a typed up business document. It was also easy to bring along to networking meetings where I could share my plan with others, which incidentally was how I managed to realise last year’s headline goal 6 months ahead of schedule.

My headline goal for last financial year was: By the end of 2016, I will present at one Australian Conference or Expo.

It was big! It felt so huge for me. So huge that I gave myself an extra 6 months to complete it. But because I had this big scary (and exciting) goal I could work backwards to identify all of the things that I would need to do to get there. For instance, one thing was to start writing a regular blog so I could work out what knowledge and expertise I had to share (and be useful to others along the way :-)). Another thing was to build my networks – you’re more likely to learn about what opportunities are out there and be invited to something if people know who you are.

So I turned up to a new networking meeting and happened to bring along my Castle in the Sky Visual Plan. In my introduction, I was a bit lost about what to say so I whipped out my Plan to show the others a practical example of how I bring creativity into business planning. I quickly walked through my Plan. And when I got to the part about my headline goal, I took a deep breath and blurted out my big goal. I was ready for the ground to swallow me up. Who was I to have such an audacious goal? And then one of the lovely ladies at the meeting said, “Well I’m about to make your dream come true.” I nearly died on the spot. Who would have thought?

Anyway that was the beginning of how I realised my headline goal for this current financial year. I was a speaker at the Brilliant Biz Mum Conference last May, and will be presenting a breakout session and co-running a post-conference workshop at the Organising Professionals Conference this August. I’ve well and truly ticked my headline goal box :-).

Now this is not to say that it was all smooth sailing, and that the rest of the story just rolled out in a linear step-by-step way. There were some twists and turns. I didn’t do everything exactly as I originally intended and I changed some of the actions on my Plan.

But my Visual Plan was a start. It was an opportunity to dream and a way to turn that dream into concrete practical actions. Looking back on it now I can see that it needs a little tweak. I want to add a bit on strengths and assets to help support the journey. Most importantly this Castle in the Sky Visual Plan got me started. Otherwise that dream of public speaking would have just sat in my ‘crazy wishful thinking’ box at the back of my mind.

So what has this got to do with you?

I am constantly awed by the power of being clear about your goals, and how much easier they are to achieve if you share them with others and are receptive to seeing opportunities. I want to give others, like you, the tools and the permission to dream big for your business and then work out how to get started on that journey.

On Friday 22 July 2016, I am running a Castle in the Sky Visual Plan Workshop where I will take business owners, like yourself, through the same process that I used for myself about a year ago. (This event has now been run, but sign up to find out about the next Inner Creative planning workshop, as well as other useful creativity tips for your business.)

Inner Creative Castle in the Sky Visual Plan Workshop 22 July 2016

At the end of the workshop you will have:
  • A one page A3 Castle in the Sky Visual Plan for your business that outlines your vision and headline goal for 2016/17, your key strategies and actions, and your existing strengths and foundational assets
  • A scheduled entry in your calendar of at least one action to take
  • Enjoyed a delicious morning tea
  • A greater network of other like-minded business owners

Plus there’ll be a private Facebook group where you can get further accountability, inspiration and support for your own Visual Plan.

Most importantly, you’ll have more likelihood of being able to look back in a year’s time on all that you have accomplished and be satisfied with your return on investment.

Take advantage of the early bird price of $65 (plus a 30c booking fee) before 30 June 2016.
Afterwards it’s still great value at $85 (plus a 30c booking fee).
It includes all materials and a yummy morning tea.
This is the first time that I’m offering this as a workshop, so I can’t guarantee that it’ll be at this same price again. This event has now been run, but sign up to find out about the next Inner Creative planning workshop, as well as other useful creativity tips for your business.
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