Four Ways to Change Your Business Plan Into a Business Growth Plan

Posted by Admin | June 18th, 2014

Every business has a plan. This plan outlines the business’s standards and services. This plan is intended as a guiding purpose, giving the business a framework. However, a business plan is no guarantee of growth. In fact, a business plan by itself can leave a business stagnant. In order to appropriately prepare for growth, businesses should adopt a business growth plan as well.

A business growth plan is more concrete, offering definitive business measures to attain success. In order to take your business plan and create a business growth plan, focus on the four following areas.

1. Market research. Businesses need customers, so it is essential to understand the nature and habits of all potential customers. Without knowing what potential customers exist, it is impossible to create an accurate growth plan. Either the plan will be too conservative, failing to capitalize on the available customers, or it will be too ambitious, lacking realistic variables. Market research can also help businesses determine the appropriate business practices that are needed to reach customers.

2. Competition analysis. Businesses not only need to consider their customers but they also need to be aware of their competition. Any competitors will have an impact on potential growth. That’s why it’s important to determine the nature of the competition and how much of the market the competition currently has. In some cases, it may be necessary to actively find ways to attract customers away from the competition. In other instances, businesses may need to safeguard the customers they do have against any infringement. Overall, looking at the competition can also provide insight into what works and what does not, giving businesses fresh direction for their growth plan.

3. Make changes. A growth plan is rarely a passive venture. Therefore, as part of any growth plan, there should be various changes enacted. These changes will vary depending on the scope of the business and the market. Some businesses may focus on making cuts in order to minimize costs. Other businesses may recognize the need to spend money to make money. For businesses that are ready, these changes can include new employees, new locations, online expansion or new products. These changes can also be more systematic, perhaps reflected in new employee training or product organization.

4. Periodic revisions. Whatever the plan may entail, it is important to understand that the plan is never finished. Since growth plans have concrete goals, these goals must be reevaluated from time to time. When progress is assessed, the growth plan should then be amended to reflect the actual state of the business growth. If the plan has not come to fruition, it is important to assess why it has failed to be realized. If the plan has met or exceeded expectations, a new growth plan should be drawn up to continue such progress.

A business plan is a framework, but a growth plan is a road map. Make sure you know where your business is going before things get too far off course.