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Lack of Strategic Planning can hurt your Business

Many businesses don’t have a Strategic Plan in place. They work on the premise of ad-hoc strategies; have a lack of direction and no focus. Even if there is a Strategic Plan in place there is not much attention paid to it. Employees don’t know what’s going on, motivation is lacking, leadership is poor at the top, there’s a general lack of drive, poor decisions are made, there is no accountability and revenues suffer.

I can speak from experience whereby in a couple of organisations I have worked with the Strategic Plan has been put on the ‘shelf’ and rarely referred to. For starters some of the more dominant personalities involved were focused on the day to day operational stuff not focusing on the long-term vision.

It is important that a Strategic Plan is developed and implemented for a set period. Key Strategic Pillars based on the core business need to be identified e.g. Growing Financial Resources, Sales & Marketing. Each Pillar has Metrics/Activities linked to it.

State clearly points such as the Purpose of your business, the Vision, Mission and Core Values, current industry and competitor situation, SWOT, identify the pillars and the strategies linked to each pillar, tactics, look at risks and even an exit strategy. There are of course many other points that can be discussed.

The Strategic Plan is a ‘live’ document and needs to be flexible, regular measurement and tracking needs to be done and meetings should be set aside to discuss the Strategic Plan on a regular basis.

The Strategic Plan can be summarised into a one page document clearly showing the Strategic Pillars and the Metrics articulated. It should be stuck up on a wall in your line of sight! Why? It will keep people focused and accountability will be set. The strategic objectives will be a priority, the business will have direction, leadership will be instilled and business growth could be a desire and not a hope.

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