October 9, 2019

5 things Marie Kondo can teach us about 2020 business planning

Karen Gould
Strategic business planning can make you feel like you have a latte to do. Here are five things Marie Kondo can teach us.

Getting your 2020 business plan together can feel more stressful than decluttering your entire home just in time for your annual holiday party.

That’s why Marie Kondo, creator of the KonMari organizing method, author of the best-selling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and now the host of Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, can teach us a thing or two about 2020 business planning.

Don’t believe us? Keep reading for five things we can learn from the organization pro on strategic business planning.

Reflect on and show gratitude for 2019

If you’ve watched her Netflix show, you’ve seen the KonMari creator thanking homes as well as the objects in them for serving their purpose. 

Gratitude is one of our core values at treetree, and we’re pretty sure it applies to business planning just as much as it does lamps. 

So, before you dive into your 2020 plan, reflect on your highlights and biggest learnings from the past year.

What were your biggest achievements? What do you want to continue in 2020? What do you want to leave behind in 2019?  

Make a gratitude list for all the accomplishments and lessons learned.

Inc. recommends using Q3 as a starting point for strategic planning before reflecting on the rest of the year. “If you had a killer Q3 in sales then be sure to dig deep into the reasons for your success and double down on those for the incoming quarter. Perhaps you botched a product rollout. Make sure to capture your lessons learned and devise a plan to fix it over the next 90 days.”

Does your overarching vision spark joy? 

If you know nothing else about KonMari, “sparking joy” is undoubtedly the phrase you’ve heard. 

This is the idea that focusing on what does not make you happy only generates more negativity.

Think about this in terms of your company’s overall vision. Does it still spark excitement and purpose in your team? If not, now’s the time to revisit your overarching vision. 

Inc. suggests holding up your overarching vision against three questions: 

  • Is it simple to understand? (Could a 9-year- old make sense of it?) 
  • Does it excite you and your team? 
  • Does it describe why your team exists? 

Visualize the destination 

Much like visualizing how you’d feel in your newly tidy home, it’s important to set concrete goals for 2020. You need to know what you’re tracking toward in the first place, and tying numeric benchmarks can increase your chances of success.

If you’ve ever set a SMART goal, then you know the ‘M’ stands for measurable. For example, instead of saying, “I want to grow sales next year,” try something more like, “I want increase sales of product X by 7% in Q1.” 

Writing down your goals and regularly reviewing them can increase your chances of success by up to 95%. 

Prioritize your initiatives

A unique step in KonMari is prioritizing your decluttering by category rather than by room. For example, clearing out all clothes rather than attacking your bedroom as a whole.  

When it comes to crafting your 2020 business goals, Inc. recommends a similar tactic, pointing out that teams often have more strategic ideas than they have manpower to attack them. 

That means you need to assign a level of prioritization on the strategic initiatives in front of you. Batch them together into categories of ‘must-do’ and ‘nice to do.’ If there are priorities that will likely compete for resources, agree which are most important. 

Those pesky ‘must-do-but-can’t-do-right-now’ initiatives often require some creative firepower.

Build a communications plan 

While you could attack tidying your home solo, the results probably won’t last long if your family isn’t on board with the change.

The same goes for 2020 planning. You, as the leader, could decide what the plan is and expect everyone to fall in line. But how effective will you be?

Inc. suggests agreeing, as a group, “what needs to be communicated to the broader organization, who will deliver it, and when that is to happen. A town hall-type meeting with all employees is a great way to kick off a new strategic plan.”

Make sure individual leaders follow up this larger meeting with a smaller team touch-base and ensure that the final communication plan is consistent and repeatable. 

How’s your 2020 vision coming?

If you feel like you have a latte to do for Q1 and not enough team to tackle it, it’s time to call the trees. Reach out to learn how we can help strategize and execute on your 2020 business goals.