Your Action Plan€¦ and How to Execute it
Creating a strategic business plan is a great first step. But if your business plan gathers dust on a shelf its value is lost. This is where the action plan comes in. It's the place where the rubber meets the roadâ¬"the catalyst that transforms your business plan into actionable results.
Your action plan sets priorities and describes the specifics of implementing your business plan. The key components of your action plan are long-term and short-term objectives. Define your long-term objectives and then set short-term objectivesâ¬"baby stepsâ¬"that break the larger goal down into easy-to-achieve chunks. Review these mini-goals every three to six months, and keep checking to see if you're meeting your objectives.
Use your action plan to define how you'll operate your business on a day-to-day basis. Address issues such as how and when you'll manage research and development, hire employees, serve customers, market your offering, publicize your company, and work with partners and vendors.
Your action plan should get down to legal brass tacks as well. You need to provide detailed information about legal preparation and documents. Describe how you'll obtain trademarks and licenses, rent space or create a home office; order, install, and maintain equipment; purchase and inventory supplies; market your business, and distribute products and services. In other words, your action plan turns your business plan into a game plan that makes it real.
How do you execute your action plan?
You've established your vision, created a business plan, secured funding, and outlined your action plan. Now it's time to act. So how do you execute your action plan?
Once you've identified your long-and short-term objectives, you're ready to execute using the baby-steps approach that incrementalizes the entire process. Want to execute your action plan in the simplest, most success-prone manner?
Create an action plan based on your business plan.
Review the action plan with your team and solicit feedback.
Agree on a strategy and a direction.
Review your long-and short-term objectives.
Break the objectives down into manageable components.
Identify required tasks and prioritize them.
Begin executing against these goals, taking incremental, baby steps.
Break large tasks down into manageable short-term efforts. As each smaller goal is reached, you'll experience a sense of accomplishment and generate momentum and confidence.
Rememberâ¬"it's not necessary to start out by attacking the most important issue if you can get some little ones out of the way first.