Strategic Planning for the Upcoming New Year


Though it’s only October, there’s no denying that the new year is coming swiftly upon us. Soon enough, business owners will be wrapped up in the whirlwind of the holidays. While spending time with loved ones is important, so is strategic planning for next year.

Getting a head start on evaluating your business will let you enjoy quality time with family and get a great start in 2019. Check these 5 items off your to-do list:

1. Perform a SWOT Analysis

Take time at the end of the year to complete a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis and use the data to drive your strategic planning. Compare the results to the strategic plan you set at the beginning of 2018, then decide what parts worked and what parts didn’t. Take an honest look at where you are, where you want to be, and how you plan to get there. The safest way to take a journey is with a great roadmap, and a SWOT analysis can help you create one.

2. Make a Plan to Renew Your Knowledge

If you’ve already had training in strategic planning, or you’d like to start from scratch, the new year is a great time to seek out resources, trainings, and conventions to help you get started. Working with a business coach can give you incredible access to expertise, as well as a sounding board dedicated to helping you achieve the goals you’ve set for your business.

3. Keep an Eye Open for New Talent

Around the holidays, other business owners can start to get distracted. Stay sharp and keep an eye out for talent that would be swooped up quickly any other time of year. Make a real hiring push during the holidays, and you’re sure to see talented recruits that are looking for work.

4. Create Your Budget

This one’s pretty obvious. At the end of the year, create your budget for the following year. Spend time looking at where your money went the year before, and if those expenses were worth the investment. If not, the new year is the perfect time to start weeding out unnecessary expenditure.

5. Make a Resolution to Roundtable

Though it seems cliche, the magic of the holidays just might be what it takes to follow through on your 2019 resolution. One of the best resolutions you can make for yourself and your business is participate in a business owner roundtable. The goal of the business owner roundtable is to bring together a small peer group. Once everyone is laser-focused on the goals, the focus shifts to the hot topics on every business owner’s plate, including demystifying financials, developing key performance indicators, and strategic planning.

Want to make a professional resolution that will change your life? Work with a business coach. Catalyst Group ECR can help you get off on the right foot in 2019, with advice and coaching for every strategic planning decision that you make. Get in touch and learn more about how a business coach can improve the life of your business.

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Coffee cup on top of goal setting calendar

5 Categories of Leadership Objectives for Goal Setting

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We’ve discussed quite often the necessity of setting clear goals for yourself and for your business. Without goals, it can feel like you’re constantly reacting to situations as they occur, without a clear path for where you’re going next. That’s why major publications, like Entrepreneur, commonly puts out articles about the importance of setting goals and doing so the right way.  Catalyst Group ECR can not only help you set those goals, but also with narrowing down exactly what your leadership objectives should be. There are hundreds of different skills that business leaders could work on, but we’ve narrowed it down to 10 that we feel can be implemented quickly and easily.


Grow your personal database of knowledge and resources about your sector. Read the most recent information on data and trends using Google Scholar to find academic articles. Pick up the latest business “self-help” book to figure out what others are doing and finding success with.


Work with your team to find the most common causes of workplace distraction and discuss solutions for eliminating those distractions. Unproductive workers cost the company valuable time, money, and resources, but sometimes the problem is in the system, not in the worker. If mandatory weekly meetings conflict with ongoing deadlines, that’s something that management needs to know about and improve upon.


Work with a coach to find better ways to speak to your team and your clients, both verbally and in writing. The art of using words to communicate ideas comes down to more than what you say- it’s about how you say it. You may be completely unaware of the messages that you’re giving with your tone and body language, and becoming aware can have a major, positive impact on the way that you express yourself.


You’re not the only person who could benefit from the expertise of advisors and coaches, like Lori Moen of Catalyst Group ECR. Work with your team to figure out what skills they are interested in growing and set up coaching appointments to help them do that. Allow ownership of the coaching process, without interfering too much with choosing those skills. You’ll find that your team grows in confidence when they feel that they are in charge of their professional development.


Sometimes, though it can be difficult to admit, our team’s level of motivation comes from the culture of the business. Taking the time to nail down the values, principles, and culture of your company can help everyone remain accountable. Remember, though, that you are just as responsible for maintaining that culture as everyone else. If one of your values is that everyone treats the other with respect, you must also be willing to follow that rule.

What You Can Expect from a CEO Roundtable

Despite the world’s movement towards interconnectedness and networking, it can feel like you are alone in your role as CEO of your company. The responsibility of being in charge of a large business can weigh on the heart of mind of business owners and CEOs alike, leaving little space for thoughts on seeking help, improvement, and growth. That’s where a CEO roundtable comes in.

CEO roundtables allow you to come together a peer group of business owners in a confidential, safe space, where the goal is growth, never judgement. It brings together individuals in top-level leadership positions in an intimate, candid setting. There, you’ll have the opportunity to speak about the trials and triumphs that each individual encounters in their position, then seek out solutions that can be brought back to each individual’s own company.

When you sign up to participate for a CEO roundtable,  you are becoming part of a group who wants to feel the improvements coming from their own hands. It’s for those who want to arrive upon their own solutions, instead of being prodded along in directions that may not suit their needs or the needs of their business.

Once everyone is laser-focused on the goals, the focus shifts to the hot topics on every business owner’s plate, including demystifying financials, developing key performance indicators, and strategic planning. Through debate, conversation, and peer mentoring, you can leave your CEO roundtable feeling refreshed about your status as leader of your business.

Most importantly, you guide the conversation. With your peers, you decide what the next topic will be and what the outcomes of the meeting should look like. With Catalyst Group ECR, you will be in charge of your own growth as a leader and you will be held accountable to your own standards. We are only here to facilitate that success.

If you’re ready to grow as a leader and a CEO, contact Catalyst Group ECR to get on board with upcoming CEO roundtable events.


Why CEO Roundtables with Catalyst?

Catalyst Group ECR’s goal is to contribute to the success of its client companies by providing forums for business owners, Board and Committee Chairs, CEOs and senior executives to discuss critical business issues. We are dedicated to helping senior business leaders to be more effective in their roles and to improving the performance of their companies.

Our CEO Proundtables Provide Opportunity

Our roundtables provide an opportunity for business owners, Board and Committee Chairs, CEOs and senior executives to gain ideas and knowledge from others facing common issues in a confidential peer setting, while expanding their professional networks. Members use the groups to discuss both company-specific challenges and issues that all roundtable member companies face.

Why Catalyst? What Makes Us Different?

Catalyst Group ECR has a leader with broad experience in corporations, consulting and executive development, along with deep familiarity entrepreneurship and ACTUAL business ownership. Our business experience, familiarity with member companies and careful session preparation enables us to add relevance and depth to the roundtables’ discussions. It will be well worth your time to pursue a roundtable discussion if you’re looking for feedback on YOUR business from other business owners.

How can others benefit my business?

Our roundtable members participate in our roundtables for a number of reasons unique to their industry, company and business circumstances. Yet each of them takes away practical, real-world ideas from their peers that they can implement in their own companies, while also broadening their professional relationships. Our roundtable groups generally meet quarterly for a mixture of dialog amongst the members and discussions on topics of special interest to the members led by outside experts and are facilitated by Lori – the founder of Catalyst Group ECR!

Contact Our CEO Roundtable Team to Schedule Yours!

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