Your business can’t grow without an effective Strategic Plan. It takes time and effort to plan well and keep the plan relevant. It is quite an investment of time and thought, but it pays for itself many times over. In addition, the plan must be managed carefully. The design of methods used to achieve the objectives must always be on the manager’s radar. A well designed Strategic Plan is an outstanding management tool! Check your Strategic Plan against the following checkpoints:
1. You’re happy with your business results.
2. Your operations are congruent with your strategic objective.
3. Your employees understand and execute their roles in your plan adequately.
4. Your performance goals are measured and adjusted as needed.
5. You handle deviations from your goals appropriately.
6. Your hiring decisions are linked to your Strategic objectives.
7. Your plan shows how you will expand your staff.
8. Your plan shows when you will move aside and shift some decision making to others.
9. Your plan is explicit about how your business will grow.
10. Your strategy allows for environmental and technological changes.
A tight Strategic Plan is an excellent foundation for securing additional funding and convincing others of the value of your Mission. This type of planning involves creativity and brainstorming. There is no perfect way to do it. That’s why your plan should allow for a little flexibility. The better you understand your industry, your business and where you want it to go into the future, the better your Strategic Plan will be.
“Every successful enterprise has a very clear strategic purpose.” Mitch Daniels
“Most People end up owning a business by accident. Therefore, they don’t usually have a thought process and strategic vision.” Carol Roth
It’s hard to stay focused on anything in this complicated and fast changing age that we’re living in. However, no matter how hard it is, if we want to get to the state of success that we want to achieve, we must stay focused on what we really want for our business. As business owners, we want to see our visions become reality. Laser like focus is necessary. No matter what’s going on around us, we must keep our visions in our imaginations. When we do this, our attention will be drawn to the things that will help us reach the specific goals involved. This also points to the reason we should keep a written copy of our business vision accessible for all stakeholders to see. This will keep the decision makers from straying away from that important goal post. Following are 5 steps that you can take to help keep your vision in focus.
1. Keep the reason that you are business fresh in your mind.
Daily complexities and distractions can consume all of your attention and time if you allow it to. Successful business managers keep the reason they started the business always in mind. It helps you maintain your personal drive and enthusiasm.
2. Pay attention to the conversations going on in your business.
Does what you hear indicate an understanding and commitment to your company vision? If not, this may point to the need to share the vision in various ways. Meetings, signs, and one on one encounters may be needed. Use any creative method you know of to make the vision a common goal for everyone involved in your business.
3. Don’t be afraid of “course correction.”
All types of situations can get you away from your vision. They might include systems not set correctly toward your vision, employees or business associates who do not accept and act on you vision or customers that don’t fit the vision and take time away from critical objectives. Have courage to correct anything that hinders your vision.
4. Hire the right people.
Knowing how to hire the right people as your business grows is essential to the a attainment of your vision. Hire people who understand and appreciate your business mission and values. You can carefully test for personal values before you hire to make sure that the new hire will fit your business culture.
5. Be a perfect demonstration of your vision and values.
Employees normally follow your lead and do what you do. If you are a daily representation of steps toward your vision, they will accept its importance to the operations of your business. “Talk the talk and walk the walk.”
“Focus and determination beat brains and intellect every time. If you focus on the right things, and work at them often, you will achieve exceptional results.”