At the beginning of the new year, I usually write down a list of goals for the business, a dynamic update to the business plan. It is meant to be achievable within the year. However, as with many small businesses, plans get shelved due to unforeseen circumstances. Not only do plans get shelved, items get overlooked when accomplished.
Business Plan from the Past
When looking for a file, I came across this business plan from 2013. I was incredibly surprised to see that we have actually accomplished every one of these goals. EVERY SINGLE ONE. It took three years, but we have checked them all off. I forgot about this document, and certainly did not recognize when each goal was accomplished. In small business, it seems like everything is always in motion, rolling and drifting in one direction or another. These goals came and went without any fanfare. It is very satisfying to look back at this list.
On the business plan, my favorite goal is #5: Continue to have fun. As my business gets older, it’s sometimes easy to loose sight of the fun part. Bigger business means bigger challenges and bigger problems. But, if you lose sight of the fun part, all the challenges become overwhelming. Honestly, I do lose sight of the goal at times. But I am encouraged when I take a step back and see the advances we have made and the positive impact we have on our communities.
2016 Business Plan Goals
With this revelation, I revisited our 2016 goals.
- Implement table service in the sitting room
- Have full-time staff assume more responsibility for managing the departments
- Investigate a business collaboration for a 3rd location
- Develop more trade partners at origin
- Focus and highlight our sustainability and community relations as a core misison of our business
- Update and move our website, making it more user friendly and easier to navigate with a clearer message
- Emeran focus on International Development via coffee
I am happy to say, the first two goals have already been accomplished! We also have six coffees coming in that are relationship coffee, meaning we have a direct relationship with the grower or wash station manager. Goals #1, #2 & #4
Goals #5 & #7
Over the years, we have lost our message as the specialty coffee industry has become larger and more focused on taste. Clare has been promoted to Community Relations Director to re-engage in our community. She educates about the positive impact coffee has on both our communities and the growing communities. We are focusing our philanthropic work with two organizations in Honduras: Project Ascend Honduras and Fundacion Amigos del Cafe. This ties into the realignment Emeran has in focusing on coffee as an important component in international development. Although 2016 is half over, we are still excited about the direction we are going and what the rest of the year has in store for us.