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A strategic plan is typically focused on mid to long-term goals and explains the basic strategies for achieving them.The purpose of strategic planning is to set overall goals for your business and to develop a plan to achieve them.It may be that decision-making in some areas will be handed to others, or that processes which have worked well in the past will no longer fit with future plans.
It involves stepping back from your day-to-day operations and asking where your business is headed and what its priorities should be.
Taking the decision to grow a business means embracing the risks that come with growth.
Strategic Planning is a comprehensive process for determining what a business should become and how it can best achieve that goal.
It appraises the full potential of a business and explicitly links the business’s objectives to the actions and resources required to achieve them.
Developing a strategy for business growth requires you to deepen your understanding of the way your business works and its position relative to other businesses in your markets.
As a starting point, you need to ask yourself the following three questions: While the second question is at the heart of the strategic planning process, it can only be considered usefully in the context of the other two.A strategic plan needs to be realistically achievable.As with any business activity, the strategic planning process itself needs to be carefully managed.A SWOT analysis identifies the internal and external factors that are favourable and unfavourable to achieving a business goal: Growing a business can pose some considerable personal challenges to the owner or manager, whose role can change dramatically as the business grows.Effective strategic planning involves challenging the way that business has been done up to this point.Strategy is about choices: knowing what to do as much as knowing what not to do.Your strategic plan tells your people what they should be doing so that they don't have to worry about doing the wrong things, or having to go to a manager every time there is a decision to make.Or you might decide to hold strategy brainstorming sessions - which might involve seeking contributions from a broader range of employees and even key customers. But don't neglect the outcome - it's also important to make sure you capture the results in a strategic planning document that communicates clearly to everyone in your business what your top-level objectives are.Such a document should: Strategic planning is about positioning your business as effectively as possible in the marketplace.The document that contains the strategic plan is not what is valuable; it's the information within it and the process used to create it, that is then SHARED and COMMUNICATED with the rest of your team.A great strategy is most often re-evaluated on an ongoing basis (yearly or quarterly, for example), rather than being a static document just sitting in a binder.