The Strategic Planning Process in 7 Clear Steps, Part 3

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This is it: the final installment of our three-part series on Brian Tracy's strategic planning process, as laid out in his book The Way to Wealth Workbook, Part III: Blueprints for Success. Here we'll get into the final two steps of the seven-step process (article 1 and article 2 are available on our website) , and explain how they all come together.

6. Plan your organization.

You've already got most of your initial team in place but during the actual launch phase, you'll probably need to start hiring additional staff. That's why this step focuses on planning your staffing around your company's most likely needs, so you can hire efficiently and cost-effectively.

First, figure out how many staff you'll need for the initial round of production or service delivery, based on your numerical projections of your market from Step 3, and your projections for your first round of production from Step 4. Can you afford to bring them all on at once, or should you stagger the hiring as your production scales up?

Now is also a good time to define the leadership structure of your company.

  • Who will serve as CEO, CFO, and so on?
  • Will you decide policy by votes, or will there be a hierarchy, or some combination of the two?
  • Which people will formally own the company, and in what percentages?
  • What will you do, exactly, if one of those people leaves – or if you have to fire some other employee during the launch phase?

Draft these policies now, because you'll need them soon enough.

7. Project your finances.

Here's where the data from all the other steps comes together, and you dig into the hard numbers of your business. The good news is that most of this math will be simple arithmetic, and it'll be based on numbers you've already laid out in the previous steps.

  • Will you divide your sales period on a monthly basis, bimonthly, quarterly, yearly, or on some other system?
  • How much do you expect to make or lose during the first sales period? During the first year?
  • How long will you have to keep an employee on board before they start turning you a profit?
  • How much do you expect to spend on marketing, production, delivery and so on, before these activities start bringing in steady money?

It's also crucial to design a system for financial oversight of your company.

  • Who will monitor and update the balance sheets?
  • How will you account for each instance of spending – and how will you report it?
  • Who's responsible for filing your business's taxes, and how much do you expect to pay in each tax period?

Plan for these things now so they don't turn into major problems later.

Talk with your Coach about the financial reports we provide. These reports can show you financial data on your industry, and even provide data benchmarks. You might find it surprising, but we have access to data that can show you exactly what the financial metrics of your industry are.

Your Coach can provide you with data in over 20 key metrics, gathered from tax filings across the country (personal identifying information is removed, of course). Using these reports, you'll be able to see an amazing amount of metrics from your competitors – things like:

  • How many days it takes into collect on accounts,
  • How long companies are stretching their accounts payable, their fixed asset turnover, profit per employee, revenue per employee, sales growth, profit growth, and even billable hour efficiency in some cases.

These facts are invaluable for projecting your finances and benchmarking your current results.

As Brian Tracy says in his book The Way to Wealth Workbook, Part III: Blueprints for Success, “The primary reason for business failure is the lack of a business plan.” With a solid strategic plan in place, though, you'll have a much higher chance of success and you'll know you're prepared.

A FocalPoint Business Coach can provide you with tips like these, along with others which you will find throughout the FocalPoint Business Coaching and Training website. Our professional global Business Coaches will assist with making your customers and employees into passionate supporters of your business. All it takes is a little kindness, and a lot of attention to detail. Contact a FocalPoint Business Coach today.


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