Most business owners that I work with have no problems coming up with great ideas. Whether it is a new product, a great new marketing campaign, a new employee initiative, or something else entirely… most of my clients are always up to something new. I know that I’ve always got some idea or another formulating in the back of my mind – how about you?

The problem is that most business owners struggle to carry their great ideas to completion. This usually happens because the initial enthusiasm fades and the work required to complete the project looks too daunting. The momentum dies… and then the next great idea comes along, and the current project is abandoned. The net result is that many projects are started each year, and very few (if any) are completed. This cycle results in a tremendous amount of wasted time, energy, and resources.

What’s the solution? Simple: learn to finish what you start. Of course, this is easier said than done. Below are three steps that I’ve found very helpful, both for myself and for my clients. I am confident that they will help you, too:

  1. Before starting a project, evaluate the value. Once you begin, quitting is not an option—so evaluate the time and resources that will be required and determine whether or not it’s worth your time.

  2. Once you’ve committed, start by creating a plan. Your plan must be specific and must feature measurable goals, as well as a timeline for completing these goals. Determine who is responsible for each step, and ensure that everyone involved has the resources necessary to fulfill their responsibilities. This is crucial to make sure that nobody “drops the ball.”

  3. Execute. You now have a plan—all that is left is the execution. If you’ve delegated elements of the project to others, stay on top of them in order to ensure that they are on schedule. Don’t allow yourself to procrastinate on your responsibilities, either.

How much more could you accomplish each year if you actually finished the projects that you began? You might be shocked by the answer—I know that I was years ago when someone asked me this question.

Decide today that you’re done abandoning projects. And let me know if there’s anything I can do to help you during this process.

Be honest – do you have trouble finishing what you start? Why do you think this is the case? And if this isn’t an area of difficulty for you, what are some tips that the rest of us could learn from? Leave a comment and share your thoughts!