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Creating Strategic Business Plans
Building Roadmaps to Success
Developing Strategic Alliances
Find Out What Goes in a Business Plan
Business Strategies Must Address Twelve Basic Subjects.
12 Common Business Plan Mistakes
What are the most common mistakes made when writing a business plan?
The Value of Strategic Planning
Developing strategies requires consideration of a wide range of alternatives, even if they seem far-fetched or are traced to unexpected sources. A strategy assesses a company’s capabilities, market and competitive research, plus industry forces impacting the business. It defines how to operate a business within the marketplace using the value of a product or service and its value chain.
A business plan is not only a guide but also a gauge for monitoring success. The strategy incorporates a system to track the success of the business or project while simultaneously defining the line of accountability. Most strategies incorporate 90-day, one year, and/or 3-5 year milestones that are reviewed in regular time increments such as quarterly.
No matter how detailed and well written a business plan, it is constantly evolving. Strategy adjustments can be required for many reasons, such as changing market conditions, economy, or regulatory issues. In addition, financial projections often need adjustments to best reflect the results of the adjusted strategies. There are numerous reasons plans change so any three or five year plan is expected to be altered over time.
Elevator pitches, pitch decks, private placement memorandums, or stand-alone executive summaries are written utilizing the information in the comprehensive business plan. The result is continuity throughout all informative materials and the chance of straying from the original business vision is minimized.
A Business Plan Strategist Does Not Just Write a Business Plan
There are numerous business plan writers available, illustrated by the numerous websites offering the service; however, there are very few business plan strategists. Generally a business plan writer asks a series of questions formatted in a certain order. The answers are arbitrarily entered into off-the-shelf business plan software and the resulting plan is often narrow in scope and inherently inflexible. In contrast, a business plan strategist works directly with clients and their management teams in order to mold and refine a company’s ideas and strategies into a viable business plan that is unique to the client.
A Strategic Business Plan Ensures a Shared Vision
Internal business plans are road maps to success not just marketing brochures to raise financing. Readers look to objectively consider facts so conclusions can be drawn based on logic, not promotional hype. A comprehensive strategy is the internal document of any organization that ensures a shared vision and path, which if followed, will increase the chances of achieving success. Unlike many other consulting firms, CBS believes the business plan must include a detailed strategy. How can a plan be truly valuable if it does not have a strategy towards common goals? These goals must be not only achievable but also measurable.
Overall, a strategic business plan builds upon marketing and sales initiatives to feed the growth of a business. It assists business operators when they consider all expenses and financial projections. Planning not only identifies flaws in initial ideas but allows them to be corrected before investing resources. Once this internal document is completed the client has the option to share the entire business strategy or a summarized version—or just specific sections—with investors, bankers, partners, and business development professionals.