Most small businesses, at some point in their business life make plans for the future of the business. The plan may rest in the mind of the owner; written down on a pad of paper, or even be a full blown Strategic Focus Plan.
The plan usually has a very good economic forecast and describes the opportunity for future growth. Why then, do we have an 85% failure rate with small businesses in their first 5 years? Why don’t the projected economic benefits come to fruition? Why hasn’t the growth taken place as projected?
There are two possible reasons why plans don’t work out:
- The strategy is wrong
- The execution is not carried out correctly.
Without knowing exactly why a business is not growing, the owner may think that the strategy is wrong. Perhaps, it’s not the strategy but the execution is wrong. In some cases the same plan is kept in place and a different execution method is explored when the initial strategy was wrong.
An answer to these two issues can be found within the word discipline.
Discipline in the planning process requires a thorough investigation of all the parts that make up a successful strategic plan. Having a plan that starts today, without a look at the past foundation and all the parts that make up a plan (resources, budgets, target markets, etc.) will, in most cases result in failure because the execution part does not have a clear direction.
In the same way, a good strategic plan without the discipline in its execution (accountability, time, etc.) may likewise cause a business to fail.
“The best laid schemes of mice and men…..”: Even with a good plan and a good execution, things may go wrong. However, the discipline used in the development of the strategy and the implementation will alert you of an upcoming problem early in the process and will allow time for corrections to be made.
If your business is not growing, take the time now to re-examine your strategic plan and your execution process. You may be “too close to the fire to see the flames”.
Therefore, I highly recommend a third party to help you through this re-examination process. Don’t ever be too proud to admit that you need help.
When you’re up to your ass in alligators, it’s hard to remember that your purpose is draining the swamp.
Nick J. Petra CFP www.strategicduck.com Our only business is helping you grow your business©
Make it a Successful Today!