Businesses without strategic growth plans always die at a standstill. This happens when there isn’t a scale to measure business progress.
According to Abbakin, developing poor product development and citing your business in the wrong location top the list of failed businesses.
Only businesses with the right strategy plan this from the onset. To achieve this level, this step-by-step guide on how to create a strategic plan for your growing business is a must-read.
And to ensure that you don’t confuse strategic plans with business plans, let’s clear this coast first.
What is a Strategic Plan?
A strategic plan focuses on your business’s mid-to-long-term goals. It details the basic strategies for achieving growth. But, a business plan covers only your business’s short or mid-term goals and explains the steps necessary to fulfill them.
To create a strategic plan that will make your business survive and thrive longer, you must adopt a workable framework that is achievable within the time-bound.
Some people believe strategic planning is for large-scale businesses, but it’s not. Growth strategy is a must for every business size as long as they have great benefits to derive from it.
Having known this, ask yourself whether your growing business needs a strategic plan or not. But, the following points will assist you to answer that question.
Do you need a strategic plan for your growing business?
Never can you disregard the importance of a strategic plan in business operations. This is because a strategic plan will help you achieve:
- Envision your business’ future over the next 3 to 5 years.
- Define your long-term goal.
- Study your current environment, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
- Set timelines and responsibilities to turn your plan into reality.
- Come up with tactics to tackle any identified problem.
- Achieve your business’ potential by reducing the risk of flying blind.
Creating a strategic plan for your business doesn’t have to be cumbersome as some people think. All you need is to see who can help you describe how it flows.
Step-by-Step to Create a Strategic Plan for Your Growing Business
Before you can achieve your long-term goal, you need a strategic plan to guide you. Here are the step-by-step ways to create it:
Identify Your Competitive Strength
State the uniqueness of your business over the entirety of the competitors. This makes customers buy your product or service over your competitor’s. It fetched you that competitive edge and profits.
Many businesses make deliberate decisions to stand out from the market pool. They leverage their energy and uniqueness to win over a large market share.
It isn’t out of place if you wish to include your competitive advantage in your mission or vision statement.
State your purpose
Your mission statement is your business’s purpose. It’s the reason why you’re in the market.
Getting this statement right is important. This is because it helps you form a growth framework for the day-to-day operation and guides your decision-making.
Ensure that you craft this statement in such as way that your customers feel that your business you create the business for them.
Make it seem that your business exists to proffer solutions to their problems.
Visualize the future
Here, you form a mental picture of what your business should look like in the future.
It’s called a strategic vision because it leads your business through the direction to locate your desired position in the future.
Before drafting your vision statement, envisage what you want to famous for in the next 5 – 10 years. List your company’s resources human and materials to determine your current level and visualize the future.
Also, study the external challenges, the position of the competitors, sales threats, and a global condition that could harm your business.
These and many others will give you a good direction to tailor your vision statement.
Design Your Customers’ Profile
Your customers are at the center here. The question is how can you serve them better?
Study your customers’ questions and characteristics. Then, create motivations around your services to them. Ensure you improve your performance to grow your customer base.
Draft Your Goals and Objectives
Viable goals and objectives get their development from the SWOT analysis and customer profiling charts.
Build the goals and objectives on your strengths while propping up your weaknesses, focusing on your opportunity, and identifying your threats.
Your goal must be measurable, quantifiable, and supportive of your objectives.
Effective goals must state how much of what kind of performance by when is to be accomplished and by whom.
Assess your resources
After setting up the goals and objectives, assess the financial and human resources at your disposal.
Identify which goals are financial-driven, and check whether you have the manpower to fulfill your plan, then recognize these goals as the key and rank them.
Develop an Action Plan
Your action plans are specific actions you set forth as a guide to implementing your goals and objectives.
This comes easy if you identify what obstacles exist to hinder your goal achievement.
Develop action items against problems and assign responsibilities and timeframe for the implementation.
Keep Track of Your Goal
Once your goals are stated, come up with measurements and targets on a spreadsheet.
Use the framework as a guide to achieving your vision. You can conveniently track your progress using this material.
Make Strategy a Habit
Brace up the plan with people, time, fund, system, and more importantly communication.
A strategic meeting must be held on a monthly or quarterly basis for a progress report and amendment in needed areas.
Ensure you’re flexible to yield towards environmental demands.
Your strategic plan is a roadmap to the success of your business. Conduct a proper self-assessment first, choose an effective team, take relevant data, and devise a working mechanism for adequate monitoring.
Connect your vision and mission to your goals and objectives and make them realistic. Be ready to take corrective action where necessary and ensure you’re managing your available resources; human and capital.
With this strategy, your business will stay longer in the market beyond your imagination.
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