Business As Usual

Failure to Plan: How Small Business Strategy Can Avoid Disaster

There is a quote by Benjamin Franklin that goes, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”.

Many small businesses have found out the hard way and that this is true.

In the business world, there are two types of planning. These are strategic plans and business plans.

Strategic Plan

It is strategic because your plan should include your strategy to attract customers and to double your earning. Most small businesses fail because their the strategies they used are not effective.

If those who already planned but only with wrong strategies failed, how terrible could it be for those who did not really do planning? Most probably they ended up in rugs again.

Olsen, on why strategic planning is important, defines strategic plan as a formalised road map that describes how your business executes the chosen strategy.

A plan prescribes where a business or company is going over the next year or more. It also specifies about how a business or company is going to get there.

It is part of your overall Quality Management and, according to BusinessBasics, will benefit from outside expertise and help.

Typically, the plan is organization-wide or focused on a major function, such as a division or a department.

The goal of a strategic plan is to help an organisation or company accomplish more since a plan concentrates the energy, resources, and time of those within the organisation in the same direction.

A strategic plan helps you build your competitive advantage, communicate your strategy to staff, prioritise your financial needs and provide focus and direction to move from plan to action.

How to do Strategic Planning

Improvisation is common in strategic plans because unlike business plans, and there is no one way to design an efficient strategic model.

It is, by definition, brainstorming at its best.

Strategic planning requires "feel" just as much as it requires on management science. Since it depends on creativity and outside-the-box thinking, there is no perfect way to design a winning strategic plan.

The use of SWOT Analysis is also helpful in strategic planning.

SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. It is a wonderful way to prepare for developing a strategic plan. Identifying these four critical components of your company existence is often the primary building block of strategic plans.

Strategic planning involves defining the tactics you'll embrace to achieve your objectives: A process that is often overlooked in a smaller businesses.

Strategic thinking identifies the methods you will take to reach your goals.

In strategy defines action is being done after doing the strategies equals methods. This is important because all plans will be useless if not taken into action.

Business Plan

A business plan, is a planning instrument for new partnerships, enterprises, or entrepreneurs who are earnest about starting a business.

A business plan serves to define the purpose of your business and helps plan human resources and operational needs. It's critical if you’re seeking to fund or invite others to fund your ideas.

Your business plan is a written record that defines your business. It includes your business objectives, strategies, sales, marketing and financial forecasts and strategies.

A business plan helps you clarify your business idea, spot potential problems, set out your goals and measure your progress.

You’ll require a business plan if you want to ensure investment or a loan from a bank. It can also serve to convince clients, suppliers and potential employees to support you.

How to do Business Planning

Measures (2017) provides two ways on how to do business planning. These are the marketing and sales, and expert insight.

In doing marketing and sales, the first thing that you have to do is a market research. In your market research, you should be able to determine the best ways to reach your customers.

Use it to create a marketing and sales plan that will work within your budget. Your plan will help you make decisions, such as whether to use radio, print or internet advertising, or a combination of various marketing channels.

Expert insight will tell you that your business plan need to be professionally made. The importance of a good business plan cannot be overemphasised.

It should only be simple but will all the important details inside. In this way, it gives you the idea that one way of doing a business plan is also looking into its presentation.