Now you have got your business image sorted out, we can move on to your strategic planning process.
I always describe the planning process as a journey. Imagine you were going to the South of France on holiday; once you have identified the resort the next thing you would do, assuming you were going to be driving, is to plan your route.
Why treat your business any differently? A strategic plan is your destination, what you want the company to look like and stand for. Think back to the Nelson Mandela story. Can you imagine what your business is going to look like in three years’ time?
The business plan is your operational map and route to get you there. It has often been said that “Nobody plans to fail but many people fail to plan” or “failure to plan is planning to fail”.
“Storming Norman” of Desert Storm fame reportedly said that a good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow, so just get on and do it! The following quote is one I saw framed in the office of one of my clients:
“The nice thing about not planning is that failure
comes as a complete and utter surprise
and is not proceeded by long periods
of worry, anguish and self-doubt”.
My favourite quote is an old Chinese saying:
“A sailor who embarks without a destination cannot possibly hope for a favourable wind”.
If you do not have a plan, how do you know what you are aiming for? Planning is important!
Next time we will continue to look at the strategic planning process, focussing on a one-stage plan you can follow easily.