As a business owner, are you dialed into a strategic plan that not only allows your company to build a strong customer base and make money, but also allows your employees to reach their individual goals?
The bottom line for any successful small business is to have a strong competitive strategy in place.
Given that you will more than likely need to make some alterations to this plan over time, look at areas such as business efficiency, money flow, employee retention and other areas that will impact your company's profitability. Business owners need to be able to revise and rethink their strategic plans, including allowing for employee input in order to do what is best for everyone involved.
As you put together a strategic plan, keep several factors in mind in order to put yourself in position for the best possible outcome.
First, put together a meeting or meetings with key employees who will be involved in the company's strategic plan. So you can receive input from all necessary departments, invite one person from different areas of the company (HR, marketing or PR, I.T., sales, etc.) to be part of the planning. This not only gives you a broad range of opinions, but also allows each department to feel like they're part of the process.
Employers should also look to their assembled team to determine areas for increasing strengths, decreasing weaknesses, and dealing with major issues head-on.
Assuming some employees have additional strengths, exploit those so that you have the best people in place for particular tasks at hand. On the flip side, not all employees will be as talented or useful when it comes to certain responsibilities. Instead of singling them out in a negative way, address what their strengths are and put them to use in those areas.
Along with individual employee strengths and weaknesses, there will be issues that your company as a whole must deal with over time.
Ask yourself and your respective managers the following:
- Is our present vision being met?
- Why have there been some or no changes to our plan in the last year or two? Are we doing things well enough that we don't need to change or are there several things in need of change but we haven't been taking time to implement such actions?
- Are we taking in more money than we are putting out? If not, where can cuts be made to address this issue?
- Where do we want the company to be one year from now?
Strategic plans do not fall into place overnight, nor do they work for all businesses. To say that your business is too new or too small to have an effective strategic plan in place is not a good excuse.
Work with key employees to look at how your business can be more focused, how your team can be more efficient, and how your bottom line can me more profitable over time.
With the right plan in place, your business can strategically place itself apart from the competition.
Photo credit: Echelonlimo.com