Business Plan Gathering Dust on a Shelf?
Planning. We know it’s important. And whether you’re a business owner or in a management position, the whole notion around strategic planning is likely ingrained in your DNA.
But that doesn’t mean we, as leaders, do it (or do it well). Sure, you may have developed some blueprint for your business. But how often do you really use that plan, referring to it for guidance, upholding accountability around it, and making it a living document that’s truly vital to your organization? And how do you know if it’s the kind of plan that consistently gets results?
Whenever we start with new clients, we ask about their business plan. Often, it’s filed away in some folder on their computer. Or sitting in a drawer. Or stashed on a shelf.
Obviously, the plan isn’t being used as intended, or at all. Then we find that plan wasn’t really effective. So after a number of days, weeks or even months, the plan went abandoned. Ignored. Forgotten.
We’re right at the beginning of Q4—that perfect time of year to prep for what’s ahead and take planning seriously. If it’s on your radar, check out these must-read planning tips and don’t hesitate to contact us to learn more about our business-planning services.
Know the difference between a good plan and a great one. Many plans have similar features. But a really effective plan includes two key elements: strategies for execution and strategies for accountability. These two assets are the power in your business engine, driving you toward that vision of success and helping you meet your most vital goals. Already have some planning documents drawn up, like an overarching business plan, implementation plan, financial plan, operations plan, etc.? Make sure they come backed by a proven system for execution and holding people accountable. Otherwise, you might later find them back in that drawer or collecting dust on a shelf.
Push back on procrastination. Research from Psychology Today shows that 20 percent of people are “chronic” procrastinators. For leaders, this can be a real killer when it comes to major responsibilities like strategic planning, which can get pushed to the back burner if there’s any hesitation around this core business activity. That’s why at MAP, we coach clients and collaborate to build customized, challenging yet totally doable plans. While the right plan will create internal alignment around execution and accountability, our coaching provides you, the leader, with accountability as well, seriously upping your odds you’ll put the plan in action and execute against its goals.
Build buy-in around planning activities. Planning activities or new plans often mean change for an organization. Even though the change may be very positive and for the best, planning can sometimes create uncertainty on behalf of your team, leading to resistance. This is normal. But with right approach, which includes building that essential buy-in and alignment around planning, the experience will go smoother and feel safe, empowering and even being fun for the teams and people you lead.
Ready to develop a blueprint for success that drives execution and accountability? Don’t delay! Sign up for MAP’s Business Planning Services today.