As an entrepreneur we take on so many responsibilities and one of the most prominent is finding a way to keep those sales coming through the door so that our employees keep a job. But what I have learned is that the short-term month to month thinking doesn’t help your company grow and it almost certainly will mean the death of it. Here’s what I’ve learned about what you need to keep your business open for the long haul.
Strategic planning is a long-term relationship
There are some who say strategy is only a necessity if you don’t know your end goal and to that I would say, run don’t walk away. Strategy is a tool to focus your energy, your resources and motivate your staff. When you have a goal it is easier to understand what you need to accomplish and create actionable strategies to accomplish it. The thing to remember about strategic planning is that it’s visualizing where you want your business to be and how you can get it there.
Growing should be scary
If you are not scared to grow, go home. Growth is about doing things that you never thought you would and finding a way to make it seem normal. As an entrepreneur growth is something that can mean a dozen different things, but it should always mean something to the growth of your business. New market, new staff, new location-whatever it is, make it meaningful.
Networking is strategic planning
Networking gives all kinds of bad impressions, but the truth is that business is built on relationships. To build relationships you have to meet people and to meet people you have to talk to them. I know that it is easy to sit behind the desk, but the truth is that when you meet people you get to know the people that can help you meet your customers and navigate your market.
The lesson here is that strategic planning is not a dirty word and when you use it correctly, it is a powerful tool. Being an entrepreneur means pushing the limits and a well-planned strategy helps you push those boundaries without falling off the mountain.