Imagine you have a boat.

You’ve just set sail and you’re headed out to sea – full of optimism and excitement. Captain of your destiny. Master of your fate.

But where are you headed?

Wherever the current takes you? Slave to the tide and the prevailing wind?

Or have you plotted a course to take you to your dream destination?

Now imagine that boat is your business.

How well-prepared are you for your business journey? How clear are you about where you’re headed – your destination – your goal?

Have you thought about your ports, your milestones and how you’ll deal with any difficult waters and get around hazards?

What about your anchor – a mentor to help you through difficult times when the sea is raging or there’s no wind in your sails.

Who’s in the boat with you? Are they well drilled? Eager to perform their duties?

Business navigation is no easier than navigating the ocean, but just like sailing the high seas, you’ll always be better off with robust preparation and planning, so give some thought to the following:

What’s the name of your boat?
This will say a lot about how you see yourself right now.
If you had to name it today what would it be: ‘Destiny’, Endurance’, ‘Unstoppable’?
Or might it be ‘Sinking Fast’ or ‘All at Sea’?

Have you set your course?
What are your goals for 2017; for the next 90 days?
And what about action plans to achieve them?

How will you recognise that storms are coming before they hit?
What have you put in place to pick up on problems – to anticipate and overcome them?
How will you fill the gaps in your knowledge and experience?

Who or what are your anchors that will keep you from going under?
These are often the people who keep you grounded, keep you going, maybe develop and inspire you.
Perhaps they are words from a loved one that you carry with you.
Or perhaps it’s a faith, a belief in something greater than yourself.

What are the Values that will keep you on a true course?
Those things that make you and your business tick, that show the world what you stand for.

Do one thing

Think about where you’re headed in 2017, and ask these questions to check that you’re prepared for whatever comes – good or otherwise.

Wishing you a safe and splendid passage through the year.