Business planning can be a struggle if you are not set up for it from the start. 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, answering the following questions will give you the framework for a practical business strategy.
The “Why” in business planning
When planning a business and creating a business strategy 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.
The “what” of business planning
In your planning process 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 within your business planning process.
The “who” in Business Planning
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 within your business plan.
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 all needs to be considered within the initial stages of the business planning process.
This will determine your human resources strategies and staff development plans that you need to put together as well as your staff rewarding schemes.
The “how” in business planning
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 an 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 a 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.
The 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 also 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.
You can download our free Business Plan to help you in the business planning process of your business. We would love to have a chat with you regarding your business planning process and what your strategy is going forward.
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.