Do you want to own a profitable business? That requires a solid business strategy.
A strategy is a long term plan you create for your business to reach its desired outcome. To achieve goals, a company must have rules and objectives that consist of guiding principles or practices that define the actions people should take or not take. It’s a roadmap that leads you from one point to another and highlights the key expectations.
Many businesses fail because they lack this direction, and they probably don’t always ask themselves the important questions. However, if you’re wondering, “where do I get started?” then you’re on the right track. We’ll answer your question with ten others you need to ask yourself to create a solid business strategy.
Sometimes it’s a lot easier to keep planning for the future and forget where you currently are. Doing the same thing and expecting different results will not be helpful, so instead, compare your past performance to where you are currently, and analyze what has worked well for your business. It would help if you analyzed other external factors based on PESTLE (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental). Take a good look at every category we’ve mentioned and see what kind of threats or opportunities could come from each.
What do you want your business to be remembered for? Of course, you want to make revenue, but if you don’t understand your business’s purpose or the values that will govern your business, you’ll slowly lose direction.
If someone asked you where you see your business in five years, would you be able to give a good answer?
When answering this question, you need to provide a good description of your company. Think about how you do what you do. What tools do you have, and which tools will you need later on as your company expands? Who is your target client, and why would they be interested in your business? And most importantly, what value does your business bring?
Alright, so now you’re excited because you know exactly what you want your business to be and where you want it to go, but how will you ensure that you deliver the company’s vision? Once you’ve identified your strengths and weaknesses, focus on what you feel is a priority for your company, set high-level objectives for all areas of your business that will guide every department you create.
Your business objectives need to be measurable based on the SMART theory (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-related). Don’t put unrealistic targets but set KPIs, allocate resources, and always have a budget.
Assuming you already have departments or you’re yet to set some, we would encourage you to set short term plans and goals for each department. Letting everyone know what they are meant to do and when they should do it encourages more accountability among staff members.
Many businesses have strategies, but unfortunately, not many tend to implement them. Have regular strategy meetings and urge your managers to create status reports. They must include research that is relevant to the business, and recommendations for your next steps.
Countless businesses are competing for a piece of market share. While you’re thinking about what makes your company stand out, your competitors are also trying to gain a competitive edge. Some of the factors that will make your business unique are its service offering, pricing model, and delivery system.
Sometimes an impartial opinion could make a significant difference if you’re open to it. Requesting feedback from people you trust as part of your strategic planning can help you easily move through the learning curve to a successful business.
More often than not, people tend to create strategies then forget them altogether. Follow up with your team or business partner and consistently check to see if you’re on track, hitting targets, learning from past mistakes, and constantly improving.
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