Know your Principles
There are many ways to execute strategic planning, and we want to share how Gainey’s preps our business strategy. There is a lot of preparation that goes behind strategic planning and many tools to help. Here’s a brief outline of what can be done: market attractiveness, competitor analysis, critical success factor (CSF) identification, SWOT analysis, product life cycle matrix, and segment planning. Using these tools will help you identify your company’s current market share rating, examine where you want your company to be, and decipher what needs to happen to reach that goal. We highly suggest you educate yourself on the listed tools because they are crucial for a successful strategic plan.
Strategic Planning is Not a “One Man” Job
When creating a strategic plan for your business, you do not want to do this on your own. Our president, Greg Roache, likes to say, “don’t believe your own marketing.” We all believe our company is the best in the business, so to avoid biased views, invite team members to your strategic planning sessions. Invite your managers, lead persons, and salesmen, at least one person from every department that sees the business differently. This way your company analysis is more honest and diverse. During these sessions, separate your team into groups and plan exercises that were talked about in the previous paragraph, specifically exploring market share and SWOT analysis. This will help your team buy into the strategic planning and lead them to participate. Each department has a hand in the business’s success, so all need to know the vision for the future so you all can row in the same direction.
Plan Ahead: At Least 5 Years
For your business to be successful in the short term, you must strategically plan for the long term. Strategic planning should be designed for five-year growth. Once you have done a company analysis and got your team together, it is time to make objectives to meet within five years that leads to your business goals. You should come up with four or five S.M.A.R.T. objectives. S.M.A.R.T. stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. You want to make sure that your objectives have a clear goal, can be tracked, accomplished by your business, and be done in 5 years. Do not set your business and your team up for failure! Once you come up with your core objectives, each department should come up with tactics supporting each objective. Tactics are specific actions that need to be done that ensure objectives are met. For example, the objective is you want your loading time in the warehouse to decrease by 15 minutes each. A tactic may be to buy another forklift to make loading twice as fast. To make sure these tactics are being done, have monthly check-up meetings with your team to keep accountability and ask for updates. Also, it is essential to make sure your team has the resources they need to perform these tactics. Ask them what they need to get the job done!
Measure your Successes
Make sure your business strategic plan is successful and going as planned. To do this, year by year reassess how your business did on your CSF. You can do this by rating your CSFs and comparing them to how you rate your competitors' CSFs. Is your company shifting the way you wanted it to? If not, you should change your main objectives or some tactics. Get with your team, figure out what is not working, and change it to get back on track with your strategic plan.
Strategic planning is very crucial for a business's success. We are passionate about strategic planning, and we know that Gainey’s is successful today because of these practices. Email Bren for any resources you need, this includes the charts and tools that were mentioned in this blog. While you are here on our website, check out what we do! Want to learn more about us? Contact us.