Reach for the sky with Strategic Planning

You’re taking an airplane trip – we’ll go ahead and put you in First Class because you deserve it. As the plane takes off, you can see your business in the distance. You’re close enough to where you can see that the bushes are overgrown and need trimming so you make a mental note to call the landscapers when you get back. You can also see that Sue’s car isn’t in the parking lot, and she should be there. She’s always late. What are you going to do about her?

The airplane gets higher in the sky. Your business is still in sight, and now you spot your competition’s building. They seem so far when you’re on the ground, but up in the sky, they look so close. Then you start to think about how they’ve taken away a lot of business from you recently. Darn them.

As the plane climbs higher, everything becomes a blur. The tops of the buildings all look the same. You can’t tell which roof is yours anymore or which one is your competition. You feel more at ease and you recline your chair a little bit. You look out at the clouds, and start to daydream about what your business could be – sales increasing, people doing their jobs, and you finally enjoying your life more and working less.

Ok, back to earth now. You may not even realize this, but we just took you for a ride – a ride called STRATEGIC PLANNING. Dun dun duhhhh!

It wasn’t so bad, was it? We flew above your business to a place where you could start thinking clearly and seeing the Big Picture. It was a good view, right?

Many business owners focus too much on the small picture – the overgrown shrubs, the problem employees – that they don’t see the Big Picture. They don’t look at the future, or even dare think about what they want for their business and their own personal life. They get caught in the weeds, so to speak.

Strategic Planning brings them and their business to a new place where they can start to achieve by defining:

  • Strategic Goals. These define strategy and direction.  Example: “Simplify our online checkout system.”
  • Outcome Measurements.  These define success. “We will be satisfied if this (outcome measurement) happens.” Example: “Minimize number of customer complaints.”
  • Tactics. These are the specific actions needed to achieve the strategic goal and outcome measurements.   “We need to to do [specific actions] to achieve our strategic goal. Example: “Research best online checkout systems.”

Are you ready to start thinking BIG … and more importantly, achieving BIG things for your company? Strategic planning will help you get there.

Bridget Ingebrigtsen

Bridget Ingebrigtsen owns Write On Command, a company that provides writing and editing services to businesses and not-for-profits. Bridget describes her six-year stint as Anchor Advisors' writer/editor as being "mutually beneficial" -- she helps Anchor Advisors keep their written projects on track and Anchor Advisors helps her keep her business on track. When she's not running her business, Bridget is running after her four children, two dogs and the latest in entertainment news. Connect with Bridget on Google+, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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