Seven Steps to Creating A Strong Strategic Plan

Operating a business without strategic plans is like driving home blindfolded–you know what the destination looks like, but you surely will not make it there. Here are the seven steps you need to take to create a solid strategic plan:

Determine your mission statement.

Your mission is your “why” behind the plan. It’s the reason the plan exists.

Here is a good example of a mission statement: Our mission is to cultivate the growth and development of small business owners, with a focus on women, minorities, and veterans, through 360-degree business support, knowledgeable mentors, and a results-driven curriculum.

Develop your vision statement.

Your vision is considered your “North Star” statement. It answers the questions “what are we doing?” and “what do we aspire to look like in the future?”

An example of a vision statement would be this: “The Nashville Business Incubation Center is the leading business development and accountability partner in Middle Tennessee for small business owners to grow sustainable companies that create jobs and wealth.”

Perform a SWOT Analysis.

A SWOT analysis sums where your business currently stands. It evaluates your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. This is simply an internal business evaluation and will help you think strategically about your next steps.

Create S.M.A.R.T. objectives.

Awesome objectives are S.M.A.R.T—they’re specific, measurable, achievable, results-oriented, and time-based.

Examples of great objectives would be:

“XYZ Elementary School will develop new school uniform guidelines by August 2020.”

“XYZ Elementary School will recruit 20 new teachers by hosting three job fairs in April 2022.”

“XYZ Elementary School will raise $100,000 for the new playground by hosting two fundraising events in January 2021.”

Decide key metrics.

Your key metrics should be tied directly to your goal. They can be considered milestones, such as the start of a new program or the launch of a new location, and/or quantifiable measures, such as revenue profit growth.

Establish an action roadmap and execute.

Create visual action roadmaps that include timelines big-ticket agenda items, initiatives, and key elements. They will help you zone in on key areas so you and your team achieve the goals and objectives.

Establish an implementation and monitoring plan.

The plan will only work if everyone is doing their part. Consider purchasing a project management software or hiring a highly skilled project manager. Develop a solid monitoring process to ensure that your employees have open and honest communication and full understanding of what actions must be taken for the plan to be successful.

You MUST learn how to plan strategically plan to have a successful business. Everything you do for your business starts and ends with your strategic plan. Ready to take the huge leap into entrepreneurship? Schedule an appointment with Angela Crane-Jones today.