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Planning Your Way to Success

As we all know, planning is one of the most valuable tools to reach success. Steve Jobs did not just wake up one random morning and build an iPhone, Barack Obama did not just wake up and just become President of the United States, and even on a smaller scale, we all have a plan for our personal success.
In business, planning takes on just as an important role as it does in life. Being an Account Manager for a worldwide translations agency, my day revolves around planning. I have a routine that I follow every day. I come to work, I make a list of things to do, and I check them off one by one as the day goes on, and I refuse to leave the office until everything is checked off. But what about long term planning? How do you forecast what’s going to happen next week? Next month? Next year?
Every Friday my company has a “Weekly Workshop”. We discuss sales strategies, negotiation techniques, and pretty much everything involved with building a successful sales force. Well last Friday we discussed Planning. The first part of the Work Shop we discussed ways we can plan for ourselves. We all pretty much had the same usual ideas: organization, follow-ups, keeping a list, etc. The second part of the Work Shop things kind of got confusing. How does a company plan for the future without knowing their clients’ future needs? We had some great ideas: such as calling the client and asking them if they could provide us with some information on their future workloads, but in the translation industry, at least within the niche we serve, a lot of projects just seem to “pop up”.
Honestly the only thing I can say I truly learned in this Work Shop, about planning, is that you have to plan for yourself. Make sure you are organized, make sure you always have resources lined up, make sure you have a backup plan if things go South and stay ready for anything that is thrown at you, because no matter how much you plan, the future of your business is in the hands of your clients.

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