One area I address in my Business Planning Guide is your Business Support System, but many people do not understand exactly what makes up a Support System.  A well developed Support System is a recipe for SUCCESS.  The four components of a simple ‘Support System’ are:  Financial, Family, Sphere and Coaching.  The financial component is made up of business savings and tax planning.  The family comprises of your core relationships and activities that define your belief system.  The sphere component offers referrals at little to no cost to your business.  And coaching gives you a set of neutral eyes probing, and an active voice challenging, your current practices and direction.  The overall function of your Support System is to give you and your business: security, energy, enjoyment and vision.  The result will be SUCCESS.

The financial component of your Support System is best directed by an accountant.  Have your accountant establish quarterly tax payments based upon the expected gross income to the business.  Set up a proactive savings program to prepare for three months of business expenses:  there may be an unforeseen illness; you may lose team members, or there may be a shift in the market that you were not expecting.  The result of focusing on your financial component will be a reduction of financial pressure.

The family component of your Support System provides you with the core of why you work.  Who you are and what you stand for are truly defined when you are away from the job.  You must allocate time; schedule and protect your time away from work.  Being in touch with and actually being involved with your core beliefs will renew your personal energy and passion, and as a result, you will perform at a higher level when you are working.

The sphere component of your Support System adds joy to your business.  There is nothing more rewarding than providing service to a past client or a past client’s referral.  No convincing, no selling your team, no overcoming objections—just being yourself and having fun doing what you do best.  And the process? It is simple:  just ask.  “Who is next to buy or sell?”  Simple and inexpensive.

The coaching component of your Support System offers a necessary challenge to your business.  “It won’t work here,” or “not in this market,” or “I can’t do that,” or “it’s not my style . . .” on-and-on go the excuses.  For all agents, the coaching process is simple but challenging:  just listen and then act.  Throughout the coaching process, you will be challenged to work “ON” your business:  Listen to challenge.  Set goals and establish timelines.   Define actionable steps to complete.  Measure the results. Dare to push your limits.

How is your support system?  If you want to set yourself and your business up for success, it is very important to look at each of these areas, analyze where you can make improvements, and create a plan to do those things.