Whether you are a solopreneur or a successful business owner, a business can fast-track its growth by simply taking a little time to lay out a plan and being selective in how to spend the precious resources of the company, namely time and money.
A business needs four things in terms of strategy: A Business Strategy, a Marketing/Sales Strategy, an Infrastructure/Technology Strategy, and a Financial Strategy.
Most businesses don’t realize that it isn’t hard to build strategies for success and have a framework for planned growth. As Michael Porter has said, “the essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.”
“The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do. There’s a fundamental distinction between strategy and operational effectiveness. Strategy is about making choices, trade-offs; it’s about deliberately choosing to be different.” Michael Porter
Here is a breakdown for developing strategies in each of the four pillars of successful business management.
A Business Strategy
This is the category where a business outlines its big picture plans and strategy for growth. Questions to be answered include the following:
- what does the business do and what does it not do?
- when does it do it?
- who does it sell to?
- where does it sell?
- what’s the price/cost?
- strategically over time, how does it morph, scale, grow, pivot when necessary, and survive the ever-changing market successfully?
It is essential to look at short-term needs and long-term growth goals as you build out this section as it will impact the other strategies.
The Marketing/ Sales Strategy
Building out the marketing and sales strategy means taking the time to get clear on your ideal audience, how to reach them, and their pain points and desires. This helps to create the right messaging that will resonate. You can then educate your target audience as to how you will solve their pain points and satisfy their needs.
When there are sound, well-orchestrated marketing strategies bringing in the right prospects, it is much easier for sales to convert the prospects into paying customers or clients.
The Infrastructure/ Technology Strategy
As Michael Gerber put it, “Systems run the business, people run the systems.” It is vital to develop a strategy for the infrastructure, (the nuts, bolts, policies, procedures, technology, etc.), that runs the business and how it evolves. This pillar also includes the organizational strategy: who you need, how they work together, organization, reporting, how to support the team, and how to support each team member so they will thrive and grow.
Developing an all-star team and a business run with systems is vital for success that allows the owner freedom. If a business owner chooses to add new team members, it is very important to hire people who are motivated and who will help to grow the culture intentionally. Culture is how people work when the owner isn’t there. Culture is what creates a thriving, well-run business where the team is productive and happy, and the business is stable and profitable.
The Financial Strategy
It is important to keep clear on the fact that this is a business, not a hobby. That means keeping profit high on the agenda. Profit is what allows a business owner the options to grow, pivot when needed, and do more. Profit allows the opportunities to hire more people, grow the marketing, or grow the infrastructure and create greater efficiencies.
Getting clear on a strategy to grow the business in a planned fashion, so there is money left over, is instrumental in getting clear how much money the company needs to stay in that sweet spot.
Building your business strategically is about getting the options, choosing how and where your investment resources, and creating a plan that makes sense for the thriving, profitable business that you are building.
Kristen David, a former trial lawyer and partner who went from working 85 hours a week and barely making ends meet, built it up to a million-dollar-plus business, then sold her shares and pivoted into a business coach guru. She is now an international speaker, bestselling author, and operates a successful business, empowering business owners to build thriving, profitable businesses that are self-managed with systems. She helps busy business owners build those systems by implementing policies and procedures the Fast Track Way.