Every month, on the 15th of the month, I review how I am performing against my goals. I do this in both my day job and my Domaining business. In both cases I set clear goals for what revenue I expect to hit in order to be on-track with my goals for the year. It always surprises me how few people do this and then at the end of the year say, “well I didn’t hit my goals for the year.” If you are only planning one year at a time and looking back at the entire year you really aren’t doing what need to be done to meet or exceed your goals.
Call it forecasting, planning, whatever you want, it doesn’t have to be complicated in any way, but you should be doing it if you do honestly care about hitting your goals. In the case of my Domaining business I start with what my overall goals are for the year, i.e. I want to make $X this year. From that point I break it down by month and set a goal for each month, I want to make $X in January, $Y in February, etc. Then I go a step further (but you don’t have to) and break-down where the income comes from each month, in my case a majority is from developed domains that are producing income along with a nice growing revenue stream from domain sales. Ask me on July 1st how June was and I can tell you if I hit my goals or not and if I’m still on-track to hit my goals for the year. You should be able to do the same.
Doing this actually changes the way you do things and makes sure you’re putting the focus in the right places. If you notice mid-month that you are doing better in one area than another you can shift your focus, if you’re exceeding your goals you can adjust your plan going forward, heck maybe you’ll have an even better year! The idea is that if you’re not setting monthly goals it can be easy to get to June and go, “How the heck did I get here?” You should know exactly how you got here and exactly where to go from here. It doesn’t take a complicated spreadsheet, you don’t need Excel, but you do need to set a goal for the year, break it down by month, and then make sure that every single month you are taking the time to check-in with yourself and either give yourself that extra push if you’re falling behind, or extra reward if you’re ahead (maybe another domain for your portfolio!).
If anyone wants a sample of the spreadsheet I use feel free to email me but like I said, you don’t need it, don’t get too complex here, just set goals (realistic ones) and make sure you check-in mid-month to ensure you’re on track, if not flip a switch, kick it into high gear, and make it happen!