The secret to the success of every business lies in a well-written and well-prepared strategic plan. Just like a battalion of army strategizing their next move to beat and conquer their opponents or a sports team strategizing the way how the players will position and play to win the game, businesses need a lot of strategies in order to stay afloat in the competitive market and make a name for themselves through brand awareness and earn revenue in order for their operations to flourish. Strategic planning can be difficult so a team of managers is assigned for this challenging task. Planning for strategies varies from one business to another but making a strategic plan has the same format that anyone can follow, especially if it’s their first time creating one. Read the article to know how to make a printable strategic plan.
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Purpose of a Strategic Plan
The purpose of strategic planning is to set overall goals for your business and to develop a plan to achieve them. It involves stepping back from your day-to-day operations and asking where your business is headed and what its priorities should be.
How to Make a Strategic Plan?
1. Develop Your Team
Who is going to be on your strategic planning team? You need to choose someone to oversee the implementation and then you need some of the key individuals and decision-makers for this team. It should be a small group of approximately 12 to 15 persons.
2. Collect Current Data
- A company overview: past milestones and achievements, current products or services, markets, key competencies, financial analysis, sales performance and trends in recent years, current key performance indicators
- Strategic analysis of the internal and external environments: This should include
- Current organizational structure, vision and mission statements, and value chain
- Challenges by department
- SWOT analysis: (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats)
3. Create Strategies for the Future
The next section describes the desired future state of the company. It should include these elements:
- Strategic objectives
- Vision statement
- Mission statement and core values
- Anticipated changes
- Broad, high-level goals, expressed in long-term statements
- Future business model
- Desired future value proposition
- Aspirational statements that expand on the vision statement
3. Strategize on How to Work Out Current and Future Strategies
This section describes how your company will bridge the gap between its current state and the desired future state. Based on the company’s capabilities, these should be narrowed down to three to five initiatives that will lead the business to its goals in a sustainable and profitable fashion. Throughout the process, the entrepreneur and their teamwork closely with the consultant. It should include the following elements:
- Corporate directions: This should provide a broad overview of what you need to do to achieve your goals
- Strategic priorities: Include a list of your main projects
- Financial projections: Of market, product, and other potential categories
- Action plan: a one-page spreadsheet listing each action, who is responsible for carrying it out and otherwise involved, a timeline for its completion, and a key performance indicator to monitor progress
4. Write an Executive Summary
The executive summary includes the company’s vision and mission statements and highlights the observations or findings of the company and its goals. Add a brief description of each of these elements:
- The company and its products or services
- Strategic objectives
- Major internal and external challenges
- Financial overview
- Strategic priorities
- Action plan
What are the different types of plans?
The different types of plans are:
- Operational Plans: It includes rules and regulations, procedures, and the day-to-day running of the company.
- Strategic Plans: It dictates the important decisions made within a business and considers things in the long-term and remembers the big picture.
- Tactical Plans: It involves the tactics that will be used to execute the strategic plan. Tactical plans are sometimes flexible and often break the strategy down into several parts and assign actionable tasks to each part.
- Contingency Plans: It is created for when the unexpected occurs or a major change needs to be made in order to continue towards the goal.
What are the different types of strategy?
The first of the three types of strategy is Business Strategy and focuses on how your customer will experience your business. It is primarily concerned with how a company will approach the marketplace – where to play and how to win.
The second of the three types of strategy is operationally focused on your people and your processes. It is primarily concerned with accurately translating the customer-centric business strategy into a cohesive and actionable implementation plan.
The third of the three types of strategy is Transformational that focuses on how your technology can enable and transform your organization. We aren’t talking about automation… we are talking about true digital business model transformation. It is seen less often as it represents the wholesale transformation of an entire business or organization.
Review the data collected in the last action with your strategy director and facilitator. What trends do you see? Are there areas of obvious weakness or strengths? Have you been following a plan or have you just been going along with the market? Make sure your strategic plan has addressed all these questions in order to ensure that it is efficient enough to use as your basis for coming up with strategies for the different departments of your company or organization. To help you get started making the strategic plan, download our free sample templates above to use as your guide!
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