Business Plans and Strategic Plans

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PlanningWelcome to 2009!

I am full of energy and plans on how to grow my business in this New Year!  I am trying to finish my Strategic Plan in between client work, marketing for my business, mentoring and sharing,  and taking advantage of the many invitations to seminars and webinars that will teach me more about blogging, social networking, SEO, article marketing, etc. etc.   And I am contemplating the advantages of learning about Teleseminars.  I have attended many and haven’t regretted the time spent in learning and listening to the experts.   I have taken away from every seminar/webinar new information and skills that I didn’t know before or add to the knowledge I already have. 

Am I confident enough in the knowledge and experience I have to share it with others who may benefit like I have from those who have gone before me?  I am still struggling with whether I should more clearly define a niche whereby I could hone my skills in the specific facets of my work that I love the most! 

Have you thought about what direction you want to go?

Business Plans and Strategic Plans

Everyone needs to have a Business Plan when they start out, no matter what business they are venturing into.  How can you create a business without thinking through all the steps you have to take to make it happen?! 

A generic Business Plan would consist of:

  • Executive Business Summary
  • Value, Vision and Mission Statements
  • A Management Plan (incl. a Business Profile, About the Principal, Business Related Skills, a SWOT Analysis and Advisors)
  • A Marketing Plan (incl. Customer Defined, Customer Needs, Geographic Draw, Market Analysis, Industry History, Industry Trends, General Trends, Physical Location, Promotional Mix, Promotional Scheduling & Budget and Competitive Analysis)
  • An Operational Plan (incl. Laws & Insurance and Operating Time Lines)
  • Assessment of Business Risk
  • A Financial Plan

There are many sites on-line with templates that can help with the development of each of these items.  

And as you move into each new year, when you are developing a Strategic Plan, you should be giving serious thought to how you want to move forward, what is working well in your business and where improvements/changes need to be made, how the world markets will affect your bottom line, what trends will help/hinder what you are selling, what new services/products you can offer your clients or how you can improve upon what you offer now.  There is no better way to keep on track and focused than having a Plan (including steps and timelines) that you can reasonably meet as you move strongly into each new year.  And should some great ideas present themselves to you as you move forward, you can always add them to your list and prioritize them within your existing Plan.

Think about travelling to a destination that is completely unknown to you and forging ahead without a map?  You may take hours longer to get there, feel frustration in getting lost, suffer stress because of your lack of knowledge… unless of course you have invested in a GPS!!!  Starting with a well prepared Business Plan is your first step on the path to success.

Have a great week everyone!

Diane Coville

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