It’s been impossible to avoid planner fever over these past few weeks… planners for health, diet, mindfulness, journaling, PR, marketing…you name it, there’s a planner for it! It’s that time of year when personally and in business we become nostalgic and ponder over the year’s events, the highs and lows, and naturally look ahead to the new year.

So do we need a planner to help us? Whatever happened to the good, old fashioned page-a-day diary and large wall calendar? I thought everyone had gone “digital” and no-one used paper any more…I think we all said that but secretly were scribbling away in our notebooks! My answer is, yes, a notebook or large diary will do the trick but some planners do have useful tables and trackers to help you note your social media stats, pages to remind you to plan things, as well as the boring stuff like noting your dentist appointments! A word of warning though, you may need to road test a few planners to see which ones work for you, many are quite formal, but some go the opposite way and are full of woowoo… whatever your thing is, have a good look before you buy as the cost of them can be a considerable investment – £30 upwards. I’ve used a different planner every year for the past 3 years, and had some I have used for a week then ditched them!

So as retailers, we are head down and motoring on towards Christmas eve, to try and get that 100% sell through of stock, keep customers happy, and maintain our sanity too! How on earth can we find time to plan 2018 with Christmas and a Jan sale to get through?

Here’s my list of the five main priorities you need to work on for your plan :

five action points for your plan


  • Assess your sell through figures from Christmas 2017, aswell as review Spring 2017
  • Review your stock holding, how much do you have? How much of this is seasonal?
  • Set yourself some goals and financial sales targets for 2018 – at top line level ( you can break it down into weekly / monthly targets later)
  • Spring – when are you launching, what are you hoping to offer your customers, how much will you be investing in new stock? What do you need to do to launch this range?
  • Lessons learnt in 2017

5 actions to work on, and give some thought to during the Christmas break (yes, retailers only have one day off!) / downtime and then when trade is slower in January, you can work on a more detailed plan – either on paper or in your new planner. Each point above will generate at least 5-10 smaller action points – research, social media planning, marketing, trade shows, finance – and this is when the mega plan starts to form.

I’ll be doing some work on facebook and possibly in a facebook group next year on the whole planning process from start to finish, so look out on my facebook page

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with just over one week to go until Christmas, have you read my Black Friday blog >>here<< it will help you to stand out amongst the sales noise over the next few days!

In the meantime, have fun thinking about your plans for 2018, they are not set in stone and it’s ok to change your plans, alter your direction and strategy…. that’s what makes us so diverse…we are forever evolving!




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