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A One-Page Personal Plan for Business Leaders

One-page Personal Plan

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A One-Page Personal Plan for Business Leaders

A One-Page Personal Plan is a must-have tool for all successful business leaders and entrepreneurs.  It helps you keep focus, amidst daily challenges.

A One-Page Personal Plan in trying times

When we got married some 22 years ago, my parents (who have been married for 60 years!) gave us sound advice:  They told my hubby and I never to neglect our friendship with each other.  The reason being, when your marriage goes through a tough time, you always have your friendship to focus on, until you get the other issues sorted out.

Having a One-Page Personal Plan in place, is the same.  When life throws you curve balls, like a computer that gets stolen, an employee that gets hospitalized unexpectedly or a pandemic strikes (!), you have your One-Page Personal Plan to help you regain focus, amidst dealing with day-to-day challenges.

As busy executives we tend to neglect our personal lives.  We rather focus on growing our businesses and keeping customers, employees, shareholders and suppliers happy.

In his book “Scaling Up”, Verne Harnish (Harnish, 2014) encourages company leaders to complete a One-Page Personal Plan (OPPP).

An OPPP has 4 main columns (or focus areas).  These are Relationships, Achievements, Rituals and Wealth.  Categories within these focus areas are based on a timeline. It depicts your actions for the next 90 days, activities for the next 1 year and aspirations for the next 10-25 years.


“In the end, what matters most in life are the depth of your relationships with friends and family; and the sheer number of people you’ve helped along the way. These represent true measures of wealth.”

These words by Verne Harnish reminds me that no one on their death bed ever said they wish they had spent less time with my family and friends!

In your Personal Plan, list the key people with whom you want lasting relationships (10-25 years), those on which to focus your attention for the next year, and the next 90 days. Include friends, family, communities, employees and customers.

Also make a note of the (destructive) relationships that you should end gracefully.


These go further than reaching critical milestones in business.  These achievements focus on the ways you make an impact through your work, beyond reaching financial goals. Examples include setting up a non-profit organisation or serving on your children’s school governing body.

In your One-Page Personal Plan, the key is to focus on short-, medium-, and long-term achievements.  Keep in mind that it might be necessary to choose to spend less time, or stopping the pursuit of achievements, that are taking you away from important (personal) relationships.


I believe that we find a certain sense of security in routines and rituals. Following regular routines help you achieve your goals. Examples may include a weekly breakfast date with your spouse.  My weekly walk with a good friend is a ritual that I rarely cancel, as she is a peer coach, great sounding board, and her presence in my life supports my bigger goals.

Furthermore, it is important to stop the behaviors and habits that have a negative effect on you and those around you.


In this context financial wealth is a resource for supporting the rest of your One-Page Personal Plan.

In addition to determining how much money you want to set aside for retirement, set other goals too.  Set goals for the amount of money you want to donate to communities and organisations or causes that are important to you over the next couple of months and years.

Also set aside money to support family activities, focusing on investing in experiences that create memories.

“Overall, focus on how your wealth will flow through you in the service of others, rather than hoarding it.” (Verne Harnish in Scaling Up).

Faith, Family, Friends, Fitness and Finance in your One-Page Personal Plan

The Plan also lists James Hansberger’s five F’s, as a gentle reminder when setting your priorities.

Review your One-Page Personal Plan every 3 months

The One-Page Personal Plan is an excellent tool to help you focus on your personal life. This is necessary amidst dealing with life’s daily challenges of growing a business and being a busy professional.  Therefore, invest two hours in yourself every 3 months to review your plan, and to regain focus on your personal goals, by reviewing your Personal Plan. To me personally, it is always time well spent! Download a copy of the One-Page Personal Plan HERE.

CoLAB would love to engage with you! So go ahead, and set up a 20-minuite call about your One-Page Personal Plan or your business profits with Barend Cronjé HERE.

Access the CoLAB Profit Improvement Signature Solution HERE.

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