What’s a strategy anyway?

I preach having a strategy (and sell my help in creating one). But “strategy” is such a common word it may mean wildly different things to different people.

Is it a business plan? A 5-year roadmap? A portrait of a target customer? A combination of the above?

The way I understand it, a strategy is one big & audacious business goal and a step-by-step plan to achieve it.

And no, “making money” is not an audacious enough goal.

Besides the goal, there is also a plan. Having a strategy means having a plan. So, for simplicity’s sake, let’s call it a plan from now on.

Your business needs to have a plan. The Plan.

You may have started your business with an idea and a desire to make money. Good! Probably, that sort of worked. (Otherwise, you wouldn’t be in business right now.)

You are making money, growing in spurts, you have employees or contractors. Things are moseying along. But you have this vague feeling that it all isn’t very planned or proactive. Sounds right?

Well, you’re not alone. I see this all the time. It’s common among micro- and small businesses that I work with, but isn’t limited to them. I actually believe it’s the norm across the board.

So, many businesses don’t have The Plan. They don’t have a clear direction they’re moving in. Because “We want to make money” isn’t a clear direction. It’s the reality of staying in business. You can make money without a plan, as you know—because you’re already doing it.

That’s kind of the hardest thing about all this—lotsa companies succeed without. Succeed somewhat. Succeed despite of.

But imagine succeeding with purpose. Proactively. Growing bolder, being better, achieving a purpose beyond staying solvent. Imagine having a clear direction and a plan. The Plan.

That’s what I want for your business. You would be one of the very few.

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