Business Planning

The side-stepped component

Connection 2For many business owners and start-ups the idea of having to sit down and plan out the business is something that is avoided because in these days to fast action and quick change, planning has the concept of taking too much time, and time is something that most of us don’t have enough of.

In business there is also the belief that if you take too much time away from actually getting on with the job, you may loose out to your competitors.

But business planning is hugely important to ensure that you are prepared for any possibilities that might arise as you are running off to progress with your business.

Definition for ‘Business planning’ that I’ve use consists of the following statements:

  • Considering the possibilities that might arise as a result of something you wish to do;
  • Understanding the consequences that might arise and
  • Developing actions to counter or maximises these opportunities for threats.

There may well be a land a mike and honey of success, but sometimes we need to be prepared for the potholes that may lay on the road we have to travel to get there.

Planning does not mean you do not take the path you’d like to it is just a practise that will help you to better prepared.   A process to help you answer the questions ‘what will we (I) do in the event that this happens?  What course of action will we take in this situation?  Do we have the financial requirements to cover this situation?

In many situations a business may know about a huge situation that might impact negatively on their plans, but still decide to continue, making preparation for the continual adjustments to keep things within acceptable range and have a clear understanding of what action is to be taken if these perimeters are exceeding in any way.

So here are three tips to get you started on taking another look at your business planning.

  1. Have a clear Vision for our business. This is your long term view that should drive your business forward.   Unless you are clear about what you want to achieve in through your business
  2. Have a Strategy. This the ‘how’ you are going to achieve your vision.  What steps and actions you will take to make it happen
  3. Have a Plan

A guide that you might consider using, just to help you with looking an your overall business plan, if you’ve not done so before, might be this one:

Vison 10 – 20 years
Strategy 3 – 5 years
Plans 1 year

When seting yourself some targets having an idea of the period of time you are considering under each heading and to help you being to focus this is a good basic start. This may appear quite simplistic, but it can be helpful when you are looking at how to develop your overall business planning process.  In addition it is important to note that although the Vision very seldom changes for a business or an organisation, it is the strategy of how and daily, weekly or monthly plans that change frequently depending on the other factors that may impact on the business over a period of time.

In my second peice on this subject, I will delve into planning a little more and look at the benefits of planning for your and your business.

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