“He who fails to plan is planning to fail” – Winston Churchill
Whilst a dramatic notion the sentiment resonates, whilst it seems obvious that a business
should have a strategy the majority do not or if they do it is not documented or out of date.
What should be in a business strategy?
Your business strategy can take many forms and should be layered.
Driving everything should be your business Purpose, this has been presented many ways over the years be it in Vision & Mission statements, your “Why” statement or a belief statement; at the heart of the issue is a concise statement that lays out the reason the business exists. This should be an evergreen statement that drives you forward over time.
Once the high-level strategy is set it can be broken down into timeline and target-based goals. This will typically be at two levels, 3 – 5 year objectives that see you on the path to fulfilling the overarching purpose then annual operating plans this may be at an organisational level and where appropriate broken down to team level.
Why have a documented business strategy?
First and foremost having a defined strategy gives your business direction, we see all too often business owners getting by day to day without direction and in the end, they do not have a sense of accomplishment or having reached a goal.
Your strategy becomes a framework for your decision-making, rather than making decisions on the fly you are both making decisions that are forward-looking and have guidance for any current decisions.
Having a clearly defined strategy allows you to focus on what is core to your business, when new opportunities present themselves it is clear if you will pursue them or not if they don’t fit into your strategy, of course on occasion it may also trigger a review of your strategy.
Beyond yourself as the business owner, having a shared strategy gives your team direction, data shows that a majority of employees put a high value on working in an organisation that has a defined purpose.
Why should we engage your services for something we can do ourselves?
First to make it happen! Business planning is an activity that is always on the to-do list but never actioned because there is always something more immediate to attend to. Locking it in makes it happen.
To lead the process; whilst the strategy has to be something that you set having a facilitator lead the process ensures there is structure to the project and importantly it does not get bogged down or waylayed by particular topics.
Completing the process with documentation; we often see the planning sessions occur and that is where it ends. As part of our process, we document the outcomes so that they can be referred