It’s rare to encounter a business owner who becomes excited at the prospect of setting aside several hours to build a strategic plan. Yet, for many small businesses, this is the very activity that can make the difference between “just scraping by” and setting your growth goals into motion.
As much as clients and prospects inquire about how to make it happen for their business, most owners exclaim that it would be great to tackle one day, but “they just don’t have the time” right now. So the idea gets shelved. They want it but don’t want to spend the time to make it happen. Why is that?
Two Plans, Each Purposeful
Let’s take a step back for a moment. A business plan is a concept we’re familiar with and have come to accept. This traditional document is created at the start of one’s business, and records the full array of details of the company, from vision to launch. Once we’ve packed all those pieces into one document, we’re done, right?
Anyone who’s been in business longer than a few years knows that your chosen industry is dynamic and your own company must evolve to conform. Naturally, your thoughts and hopes, and ideas from day one will greatly differ in 2 or 3 years’ time. Your dream has since become reality, so it’s wise to dust off that business plan annually, review it with fresh eyes, and refresh it with the latest details. Were you envisioning 5 employees by the end of year 2 but you’ve since celebrated your 10th employee instead? Have you outgrown your space a year earlier than projected? An outdated business plan helps no one.
Then Why Do You Need A Strategic Plan?
The company’s business plan was created by the owner of the firm, sketching the journey from concept to implementation and predicting future growth. Here’s how a Strategic Plan is both different and needed:
- It’s your opportunity to review what’s happening in the company right now; it’s a reality check – what wins are to be celebrated and what went wrong. What happened just as you planned, and what took an unexpected turn?
- The activity deserves time and attention so that you have the necessary details to formulate a plan of action to address challenges and accomplish goals. Whether it takes a half day or more, schedule this critical work time in your calendar and don’t allow the day-to-day to push it off “for later”.
- Call in your whole team (and we mean everyone!) because their honest input and creative vision are critical to moving you forward. Everyone has a voice, and no one’s ideas are dismissed. In order for your company to forge ahead, having buy-in from the whole crew will get you moving with more power and energy.
- The Strategic Planning process is guided by an unbiased observer; a facilitator. This is where your coach or consultant plays a prominent role. While the scribe captures all the salient points, I ensure the owner and the team stay on track, all voices are heard, and address critical challenges by asking pointed questions.
As a skilled and experienced facilitator, I have gotten to know your team and organize the meeting flow so that human emotions are managed and we focus on our path.
How Does the Star One Strategic Plan Stand Out?
- I bring a battery of tools that ensures a better experience. I give you an online portal that walks your team through the strategic planning steps, documents findings, and allows modifications as you need them.
- As your Coach/Consultant, I have a people-centered approach, valuing all the opinions in the room. I lead your strategic planning session with the style I know matters most to your team.
- I make sure the whole experience and the tools are customized for your company so that my planning sessions are never alike for any 2 businesses.
- Here is a link to an infographic on our 8-Step Strategic Planning Process.
What Can You Expect After a Strategic Planning Session?
As I often say, “it’s the intangible that turns into a tangible”. An effective strategic plan creates efficiencies in your company that allows you to grasp your goals faster. Removing obstacles, accepting creative approaches to challenges, identifying missing key personnel, saving time and money – all of that translates into more sales, greater growth, and much-deserved success.