Every end of the year or beginning of the year VTB Consulting is privileged to facilitate strategy sessions for various businesses or organizations in their quest to do better in the New Year. Strategic planning is critical to business success because like the proverbial saying goes “a failure to plan most times can be a plan to fail in disguise.” We have also observed that most people rarely take the time to plan their lives (individually/personally) for the New Year. In this article, we will look at; what is a Life Plan? Why it is Important and practical steps to planning for the New Year.

A Life Plan is a roadmap for the future. It entails writing down your intentions, goals for your life but more importantly, how you intend to realize them. A Life Plan is a blueprint for action. You can develop plans in different areas of your life, like business/career, personal development, health/fitness.

  • Planning is Important because It enables you to have a clear focus and direction for your life.
  • It helps you manage your resources effectively. Eg. A budget is also a plan of how you intend to spend your resources
  • It helps you utilize your time efficiently, and when you have detailed plans with set goals and targets you end up becoming more productive.
  • A plan is necessary to evaluate your success and progress.
  • It can help minimize the challenges of uncertainties that may occur in the future, especially if you go ahead to develop scenario plans based on expected outcomes or external factors.

Some people have a challenge planning for the future, maybe due to a previous failure to meet set targets/goals in the past but research has shown that most successful people are deliberate and intentional about their life plans. In the words of a renown physician; Sir William Osler (1849 -1919): “When Plans Are Laid In Advance; It Is Surprising How Often The Circumstances Fit In With Them” 

Steps to Planning for the New Year

  • Do a review of the past year to assess how you fared in the different segments of your life. For example, a review of your account statement could be very instructive on where your money came from and how you spent most of your money last year.
  • Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals for what you want to accomplish in the new year in different segments/areas of your life. For example, spiritual, financial or relationship goals.
  • Write down each goal with the strategies and resources needed to accomplish them. For example, my goal may be to start a side business this year; I need to state how much capital I will need to start and how I intend to raise that money, maybe through saving a particular sum monthly or applying for a grant/loan.
  • Share it with someone you want to be accountable to and have set times for review, evaluation and feedback. This could be a partner, mentor, coach or someone you look up to that you can sit down and review your plans with quarterly or twice a year.


(S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-Bound)


A good plan should be simple, clear, pragmatic and should lead to the desired action. Remember that a plan will remain only a document until it is acted upon; the key therefore to the success of any good life plan is in the dedicated implementation of that plan!



This article was written by Victor T. Briggs, Principal Consultant, VTB Consulting. For more details on how we can help you accomplish your life goals/plans in 2020 visit our website; www.vtbconsulting.com.ng or follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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