Your Business Plan: In The Long Term

February 13, 2015 10:09 am Published by

You’re probably quite familiar with the scenario of setting a goal, but whilst you ‘work towards it’ – don’t have an operational or structured way to achieve it.

A disproportionate amount of time is spent perhaps, on the overall strategy, rather than the plan and implementation of tasks/milestones that lead to the execution of that strategy.

You’re constantly focused on the end goal (i.e. I need 100 Customers of buying product X by date Y in the future).

There aren’t any little step by step tactics, or any real guidance/points to get you there.

So, with that in mind, how do you get there?

1. Set Objectives

You should provide financial targets, as well as other metrics to help you reach milestones throughout your approach to the end goal. i.e. let’s just say you want 100 Customers. Your goal for Week 1 (or Day 1, Month 1, whatever – depending on your overall goal/timeline) should be 1 Customer.

It might seem a stupidly small target, but the point here is it’s achievable. And hopefully realistic.

After all, if you want 100 Customers, but it takes a month to get 1, are you sure you’re going to be on track with your current model to get 100 after 36 months?

So keep your targets realistic. Let’s just say we’re going for that 100 Customers over 3 years goal.

Week 1-2: 1 Customer
Week 3-4: 3 Customers
Week 4-5: 6 Customers

…and so on.

2. Support your Strategy

A strong Business Plan that really “hits the mark” – not only identifies clear and strong objects/overall strategy, but outlines effectively who needs to do what to make it happen.

If you’re a business with just a few staff, or a business with 20 staff, everyone needs to play a part (and know that they’re playing a part) in building your business. It’s helpful and motivational too: the good work they’re doing is benefiting the company, which results in higher profitability and subsequently allows you to consider stronger reward schemes (i.e. bonuses, etc).

3. Cascade The Objectives

A strategic plan of course ‘come from the top’. It’s up to you as the owner, and/or the managers of various departments (depending on the size of your business, of course) to “internalise” the plan and cascade the various tasks throughout their teams.

Of course, if you’re a business with just a few employees or just don’t have “departments” yet, you still need to ensure that the plan you produce is well spread.

It’s worth noting at this point: the most dangerous number in business is one. One key member of staff, one stream of business, one key client; if you’re in that position you need to change it. Your business plan absolutely must ensure you don’t rely on just one single person in your for the plan to succeed.

It sounds obvious, and daft, but you’ll be suprised how easily you can rely on someone. Someone who may be entirely committed to your company, but we’re all people: a simple life event can change their plan entirely, and shift their focus on what they want to do – resulting in them moving jobs (or even location).

Either way: ensure you don’t rely on one single person.

4. Regular Monitoring

This is where most business fall down; they don’t refer back to their original Business Plan and make sure they’re “on target”.

Remember: keep the milestones small, and achievable. Hitting the milestones on a regular basis is hugely motivational and ensures the ongoing desire to see the plan through to the end. It also ensures you’re constantly aware of how the company is doing, and can deal with any issues such as missed milestones as they occur.

I’m not saying this is easy, far from it. You could almost certainly do with help: so that’s where I come in.

Give me a call on 01708 250 748 and we can have a discussion over how I can help you achieve your goals.

This post was written by M3evolve