20 November 2023

Annual Planning for 2024? Leverage Traction and EOS® to Reach Your Business Goals

“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

Ever heard of a book called Traction, or the EOS® (Entrepreneurial Operating System®) business model? If you have, maybe you already know how useful these frameworks are in facilitating your annual planning and business operations. If not, well, that’s what this blog post is all about: how the ideas and tools provided by Traction and EOS® can be used to help you grow and manage your business. 

Before we get into it, it’s worth mentioning that this is not a comprehensive overview of the EOS® model (if you’d like one, we suggest reading Traction or heading to the EOS® website). Since it’s annual planning season, we’re going to be talking specifically about how EOS® can help you reach your marketing and business goals for the year ahead – and beyond! (P.s.: If this is something you need additional support with, feel free to contact us!)

Avoiding the Overwhelm of Annual Planning

We know from experience that thinking about the year ahead and reflecting on the one that has just passed can feel overwhelming, whether you’re a seasoned planner or not. 

Whether it’s the disappointment or shame associated with not being able to reach a set goal, uncertainty about the solidity of a plan or the conditions required to support it, or not knowing where to start in the first place, annual planning can easily fall by the wayside, whether consciously or not. 

Business owners and CEOs who want to truly take their business to the next level and create a plan for success will need both vision and accountability. This is where we’ve found the EOS® model to be an incredibly helpful tool.

The EOS® Model

EOS®, or Entrepreneurial Operating System®, is a framework that growing businesses can use to make things run more smoothly, efficiently, and predictably. 

EOS® encompasses six components that relate to any business:

  1. Vision
  2. People
  3. Data
  4. Issues
  5. Process
  6. Traction

There are entire books out there (Traction being the one that most people have heard of) about EOS® and how to implement it in a business, but for this blog post, we’ll focus on just a few of these components at a high level as they relate to planning.

Why We Like EOS® for Annual Planning 

Planning towards a goal requires two ingredients: structure and time. 

By time, we don’t just mean the time it takes to execute the work to reach your goal. We also mean the time that you need to regularly set aside to decide what those goals are going to be in the first place, and how to break them down. 

The good news is that EOS® is designed to do exactly that: to help you connect the long-term vision of your business with the everyday tasks needed to get there. 

Using EOS® for Marketing Annual Planning

Everything we just mentioned about using EOS® for business planning will also apply to marketing planning, but since we’re a marketing company, we’ve got some more thoughts, of course.

Perhaps the most important way that EOS® can help you in your marketing planning is by ensuring that marketing is actually tied to your business goals in the first place. 

It can also easily show you gaps in your organizational chart and which roles need hiring for or reassigning, which can save huge headaches in the long run. 

Another helpful aspect of EOS® is the meeting template it provides, with designated time to review reporting of key metrics and project progress that relate to larger business goals.

Seeing Results with EOS®

EOS® is an incredibly helpful tool for everything from prioritization to team management, and we’ve seen some great results with it both internally and with some of our clients who use it. It helps resolve a lot of business pain points, especially when it comes to planning.  

For a more detailed and specific overview of why we like EOS® for business and marketing planning, check out our LinkedIn article here.