Business Planning Simplified
If you have been struggling with putting together a strategy for your business and you have checked out a dozen templates to help you, but it’s all too overwhelming, I suggest you simply answer the following questions and you will have the framework for a practical business strategy.
WHY are you doing what you are doing?
Think about your “why” and consider these points:
- Is it to build wealth for you and the people around you,
- Or to help people realise their potential,
- To take advantage of an opportunity,
- Or to help disadvantaged people or countries.
Answering questions like this will equate to your mission, purpose and vision in the traditional business planning language.
WHAT services and products are you providing?
When you think about the service you are providing or the products you are selling consider how you differ from others in the same industry.
- Are they unique,
- Is this your unique selling proposition (USP),
- Do they have time constraints,
- Are they quality products and services or budget products.
- What is your pricing strategy,
- Is it driven by what the market can afford or is it value based?
This will determine your sales and marketing strategies
WHO do you want to do it for and with?
Targeting the right audience is where you need to start thinking on a micro scale.
Define the attributes of who you would like to do business with. Are you looking for high net worth individuals, entrepreneurs, or maybe you want to specialise in start-ups.
Is it people who share your values and appreciate what you do for them? What are their demographics and where are they located?
This will define your client profile and the markets you want to serve.
Keep in mind you also need to define the profile of the staff you want to surround yourself with. Are you just looking for grinders who will methodically and happily grind through the work? Or are you looking for minders who will manage the business relationship with your clients.
You may be needing support in growing your business so you need finders who will attract new clients.
This will determine your human resources strategies and staff development plans that you need to put together as well as your staff rewarding schemes.
HOW are you delivering your products and services?
Now you know who your target audience is, developing successful ways of reaching them is possibly the most difficult question to answer.
- Do you need face to face interaction?
- Are you online and you need internet presence?
- Are there groups you can join to work with?
- Can you affiliate your business with another to generate leads?
- What type of person is looking for your product or service?
- Do you have the processes in place to manage delivery on timely basis?
- How do you handle customer inquiries and complaints?
Answering these questions will define the systems and processes you need to put in place to build a sustainable and adaptable business model.
Bottom line is by documenting the answers to the above questions not only will your purpose become clearer and your business more successful but you will be able to “Imagine a world in which the vast majority of us wake up inspired, feel safe at work and return home fulfilled at the end of the day” Joel Senick.
If you are struggling to set up your business strategy, our Business Services team can assist you. As qualified Accountants we have assisted many businesses in answering these necessary questions to help build their business to success. Call us on (02) 43 53 2333 and speak to Phil or Sarah Keenan from our Business services team.
Karnig Momdjian started his professional life as a Chartered Accountant with Yarwood Vane (now Deloitte), later moved to IT and ultimately held the position of National IT Director at Deloitte.
Karnig then moved into BDM roles for software companies involved in practice management systems for lawyers and barristers and then into document and knowledge management systems for professional service firms.