To have a backup plan seems sensible enough, but many successful people disagree.
The ability to plan ahead is a trait business owners look for in potential employees especially for leadership positions. Being prepared is paramount to them to stay ahead of the competition.
“Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” is a popular interview question for a reason.
Additionally, anticipating and planning for problems is second nature to some and not having a backup plan would be careless.
Yet, successful individuals and entrepreneurs report their strategy to focus on their main goal 100% is what made them effective.
Why You Should Have a Backup Plan
Having a backup plan is being prepared.
Creating a plan takes work, and planning for what can go wrong is even more time-consuming. Many of us struggle to have a plan A much less a plan B.
Yet, planning, and planning again for worst-case scenarios is essential for a good outcome especially for those events that are special to us and concern our future security.
If you are planning an outside wedding, having an indoor option in case of bad weather is a good idea.
When planning to give a presentation, having hard copies available to distribute is smart in case equipment or software fails.
Choosing to save the money you are making now rather than spending it frivolously is wise.
I once worked for a big company in a beautiful building attached to a prestigious shopping mall. I enjoyed shopping during my lunch breaks.
During that time, my Mom visited took note and said, “You are making good money, don’t you think you should save some of it?” She was right of course and I curbed my spending. A good thing because a short time later the company was purchased and my office was eventually closed.
Your career needs planning too and your plan should be reviewed often so you know where you are headed and what your options are to stay on track.
Your plan B should also include continuing your education and developing marketable skills.
Life throws us a lot of curve balls and planning ahead can save the day, and save us from heartache and unnecessary losses.
Do you have a backup plan for your career and future income?
What if your chosen profession is derailed by the economy, or makes you unhappy? What if you become ill or injured and can no longer work outside of the home, or need to care for a loved one?
As for retirement, is there really such a thing anymore? Most of us will need additional income in our later years.
We must be able to plan ahead and even with the best-laid plans, things can go wrong. A contingency plan can prevent disaster.
Having others to rely upon is also important which is why we hear so much about team building, so you always have someone readily available to help you.
For solopreneurs, online groups and communities of like-minded people are often utilized as teams.
Why You Should Forget About a Backup Plan
Not having a plan B means plan A has to work.
Spending time making a backup plan keeps us from focusing on plan A. Moreover, having a plan B can keep us stuck because we do not have to succeed with our Plan A. The safety net of a backup plan keeps us in our comfort zone.
Taking risks such as changing careers or starting a business are unsettling decisions. Fear of failure inevitably creeps in and so we plan for a safety net in case it doesn’t work out.
There are people who believe the plan B mindset sets us up for failure because we have already accepted defeat. Our backup plan derails us from working to achieve our true goal which is plan A.The minute you have a back-up plan, you’ve admitted you’re not going to succeed. -Elizabeth Holmes Click To Tweet
We might have a revolutionary idea, but it has to be implemented.
Execution of plan A is key so what we need is an action plan and to dedicate all of our time, attention, and energy for getting our great idea up and running.
An action plan is a list of tasks, time frames, and resources necessary to achieve a goal. A well thought out action plan illuminates our path to achievement.
Once we have a plan, it is all about tenacity and never giving up.
People often quit when the reality of the work, time, and effort involved in pursuing a goal become evident.
Successful people do not give in to self-doubt. They truly believe in their idea. They plan, then execute and keep pushing forward even when others say it won’t work. They persevere when they become discouraged.
People with tenacity do not quit.
We should ask knowledgeable people what they think.
The successful ask their target customers, potential investors, and industry experts for their opinions. They also read constantly and study their industry.
Asking for opinions from a spouse, friends, or parents is not helpful because they are not objective, do not know, and worse their skepticism can undermine us and derail our plan.
Have you noticed people dislike change? They dislike changes in us too. People are most content with the status quo. Taking risks makes the people our lives uncomfortable.
Friends and family like to cheerlead when we are going along and doing well, but they also like to criticize when we go our own way, then hit hurdles and roadblocks. The worst thing to do when we are discouraged is to ask for their opinions.
What is the Conclusion?
I have always been a planner, not a great planner, but I do tend to make a lot of outlines, notes and consider my options.
I did have an outdoor wedding with an indoor option. It did rain, but only briefly so the event remained unchanged. While it was raining, I was relieved to know I had a plan B.
When I was in the corporate world, I had backup plans for backup plans. I had to for my bosses because they demanded preparedness.
Now I am working independently and need all of my energy for my main goal.
My takeaway is to focus on my plan A, become a better action planner, execute and have tenacity.
How about you? Do you have a plan B?
Also see, How to Create an Effective Action Plan at wikihow.com.
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Thank you for reading Do You Need a Plan B? The Great Debate. Leave your opinion below in a comment!