Six Essentials Strategic Plan For Your Business

When you first start putting a business together, the thought of creating a strategic plan might seem unnecessary. This can be true if you are the kind of person who likes to dive into your work. If this seems familiar, you may be thinking, “I just want to start already!”

As important as it is to take action; however, it is also important to have some direction in the form of actionable steps. If you start throwing ideas together and investing because it sounds good, doing so can quickly lead to costly mistakes. The great thing about having a strategic plan for business is that it can offer a way to capture all of your ideas and knowledge while filling gaps you might otherwise miss.

To create a strategic plan that will help your business reach its goals, here are six essentials to include.

Identify Values

What does your business stand for? What is most important? For some business owners, values like customer service, family, cost-effectiveness or fast delivery may come to mind. Others may have different key values. Whatever yours are, the first thing to do is to figure them out.

Set a Purpose

After identifying values, the next thing is to set a purpose. This is where creating a mission and a vision comes in. In a nutshell, a vision statement describes today’s purpose. What are your current objectives? Your mission statement, on the other hand, must outline what your business wants to accomplish in the future. 

Outline Goals

Using your vision statement as guidance, the next thing your strategic plan should contain is a detailed outline of goals. To make the most out of this part of planning, try to come up with goals that are SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.

Instead of a goal like “Improve customer service by making customers happier,” you might aim to “Improve customer service by reducing hold time by 20 minutes when answering phone calls.” Then, remember to set a target for achieving the goal.

Consider Your Strategy

Once you reflect on your goals, the next step is to think about achieving them. Like your goals, your strategy should also be SMART. For each goal you outline, think about a specific way you might tackle it. In addition, think about ways you can measure what you do and avoid procrastination.

List Actionable Steps

After reflecting on your strategy, it is time to write it down. Like how you outline your goals, you also need to list out the steps needed to achieve each goal. 

For example, if your goal is to reduce customer hold time by 20 minutes, how are you going to do that? Maybe it will require additional phone lines or employees, or maybe you need to reschedule the staff you already have. For other businesses, it might mean hiring a third-party service to take calls. 

Whatever you need to do, create an actionable step for each task. This can take a lot of guesswork out of reaching ambitious goals. 

Measure and Evaluate

After implementing the steps to achieve your goals, it may feel like the work is complete, but not quite yet. The last part of successful strategic planning is about measurements and evaluation. Without taking the time to include this part of the process, how can you ever know you are truly achieving the goals you set out in your plan? As your business moves forward, continuously review the effectiveness of your objectives and evaluate your performance.

A strategic plan is a great way to keep your business focused on what it needs to do to keep moving ahead. By including these essentials, you can give your business an excellent star