I think we all get our inspiration when we are more relaxed. This is why it is important to take time out from working IN our businesses to spend time working ON them. This morning whilst on a 4 mile walk with my wife over Swinley Forest we came across this junction, and it gave me the inspiration for this weeks article – Are you on the right path? My wife and myself knew which way we were going as we had checked before we left home.

When running our businesses, we need to stop every now and again to make sure we are on the right path as to travel several miles on the wrong path could cost us a substantial amount of time and money. Generally, we are not able to do this on our own. This is why I always talk about focusing on doing what you are good at, and outsource everything else. To check whether we are heading in the right direction, we need to have trusted advisors who we can talk with to make sure we stay on track. We need to make sure we have plans in place

If you don’t know whether you are on the right path, it is difficult to make decisions, and you can aimlessly drift from day to day, week to week and month to month with no direction or focus. When you know you are on the right path, you are confident about the decisions you make and the actions you take. You should still stop from time to time to check that nothing has changed.

You need to make sure you have plans in place and having short, mid and long-term goals will give you something to ensure you stay on track. Below is an example which I hope will help you.

In 2003, I made the decision to run the 2004 London Marathon. Not being built for marathon running and never having done one before, I had no idea of what I needed to do. So I spoke to a few people I know who had run marathons before and they suggested I subscribe to Runners World magazine as this would give me diet and running plans and to also to make sure I had the correct running shoes to suit my running style – both really good pieces of advice.

The way to plan is to look at the end goal – which in this case was 18 April 2004 – and work backwards. This date was fixed in stone so my training had to be planned with this date in mind, so to have a fixed date in which to achieve a goal will keep you on track. I knew where I currently was, I knew how long I had to train, and Runners world gave me a training plan which meant working backwards from the date of the event to where I was. It told me my longest training run needed to be about 4 weeks prior to the event, when I needed to be doing a few half marathons, when I needed to complete a 10 mile run and when I needed to run a 10k (6 miles) race. I worked out that my first 10k run – when planning over a 12-month period – should be in about 3 months. At the time of making the decision I was running 3 miles once a week. I did know that this would not get me round a marathon course, but I also knew I could get from where I was to running this event in 3 months and I knew how many times a week I needed to run to get to the 3 month goal. I had a long-term goal, and I had baby steps to help me along the way. So effectively I had a 12-month plan and I had daily, weekly and monthly targets to keep me on track. I know that every training run I missed would set me back. I needed to have the discipline to get up and run when I didn’t want to. I needed to maintain focus. Without this I would not have put myself in a position to run the marathon.

We all need this in business, and this is what will make sure we stay on the right path. For more help and support, please call me on 07798 632173 or email

This article was first published on LinkedIn by Richard Knight on 30/03/2020