If you find the prospect of crafting a Business strategy over aweing – you are not the only one. The truth is that many Business entrepreneurs don’t really see the need. Nevertheless the is that most successful businesses have well defined business strategies.
A robust business strategy can mean the difference between a lucrative business and you working 60 to 80 hours a week all year long – and not making enough to make ends meet
On the other hand, many high performing entrepreneurs who have a business strategy are not married to their business and make piles of money – and they usually attribute their fortune to having a strategic plan which guides their business.
Your Business Strategy determines the focus, vision and aims for your whole company. A written business strategy will help guide, but not dictate, your day-to-day operations. Defining, sharing and communicating your business strategy influences and guides operational decisions.
So what is the process for preparing your business strategy?
1. Define your business vision. In your perfect world, just what your business look like What markets would you seek to dominate?
2. Decide your company’s core operating values? You are looking for the core beliefs and values that you wish your company to be known for. Once your key values are clear they form your guiding principles. In other words, why are you in business and how do you do business?
3. Strategy concerns long-term plans. Your strategic is based on the over arching objectives that will help you get from where you are now, to where you want to be.
4. Medium Term Planning. Strategy is about the large scale – long time scale. You need to include elements to guide your day to day, short-term performance. Remember to be “SMART” when setting your annual goals SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. As with any plan you need to define the tasks, who by and when. Figure out what resources you’ve already got, and what resources you need to get you past any barriers. And then create an action plan that clearly lays out how you will achieve your goals. Consulting with your staff will deliver much richer solutions.
5. It is important that you carefully monitor progress on your strategy and plans. Develop a set of milestones. Don’t underestimate the importance of this step. Being able to communicate progress to all stakeholders: investors, shareholders, partners, staff, customers and your local community is immensely powerful.
6. Communicate your strategy and plan. The short-term plan from your strategy creates the momentum and direction for your day to day activities.
7. Walk the Talk. Now that you have the roadmap, it’s time to begin the journey.
8. Make sure you know exactly how you are doing on a day by day basis. Create a dashboard to report on your key performance indicators.Prompt corrective action is often more important that the plan itself.
9. Follow the same cycle next year. (Dream, Plan, Act, Check).
Building a robust, realistic and achievable business strategy is not easy. It requires commitment, effort and discipline. Yet the rewards are obvious. Juat about every successful business has an active, documented business strategy.