According to the dictionary, strategic planning is "a systematic process of envisioning a desired future, and translating this vision into broadly defined goals or objectives and a sequence of steps to achieve them." So what does that really mean?
In basic terms, it is a written plan that will help you reach your goals. It is a simple way to make sure everyone on your team knows what they are working towards, what needs to happen, when it needs to happen, and who's going to do it. If the plan is followed (with potential tweaks, as needed) at the end of the time period your business will be where you want it.
I call this a Growth Plan (you can read more HERE). For example, if you said you wanted to grow your revenues by 30%, your growth plan would detail the strategies we are going to use to reach the goal of 30%.
When setting up a Growth Plan we:
Determine your current position in the market - How you compete in the market, your strengths and weaknesses, study your competition, understand your business model
Develop your strategic parts - Where do you want to be in 3-5 years, what about in 10 years, what do you stand for, what's your business purpose, and what strategies do you use to compete
Document the Growth Plan - Overall annual goal, quarterly goals, and outcomes that we want. Also, document the actions to be done to reach those goals, details on who will do what and when they will do it.
Implementation of the Plan - Communicating the goals and strategies with the entire team, as well as monitoring the progress
Not so complicated, right? It's really not but we humans tend to over-complicate things!
The golden nugget in a Growth Plan is in Phase 4- Implementation. You can make the best, biggest, and shiniest plan but unless you implement it it's worth nothing.
So I'd like to challenge you to write your own growth plan. Work through the above 4 steps and let me know how it goes!
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