As we approach the year 2024, it’s crucial for businesses to have a well-thought-out plan in place to navigate the ever-changing landscape of their business. One of the most effective ways to ensure your business’ success is by engaging in business planning. Over the next three weeks, we will guide you through the essential steps of business planning for 2024, including:
- Part 1: Completing a SWOT analysis
- Part 2: Determining growth priorities
- Part 3: Creating a strategic action plan.
The Impact of Business Planning: What that stats say!
It’s not just a coincidence that successful businesses prioritize planning. Consider these compelling statistics:
- According to the Small Business Administration, small businesses that engage in formal business planning are 50% more likely to survive than those that don’t.
- A study by the Harvard Business Review found that companies that set specific, written goals were 10 times more likely to achieve them compared to those with no clear goals.
- In a survey by the American Express OPEN Small Business Monitor, 70% of small businesses with a formal business plan reported increased revenue, while only 52% of businesses without a plan experienced the same.
So, where do you get started?
Part 1: Complete the SWOT
A SWOT analysis is a fundamental tool in the world of business planning. SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. This strategic exercise helps you gain a clear understanding of your business’s internal capabilities and external factors that could impact your success.
Strengths: What does your business excel at? Are you known for exceptional customer service, innovative products, or a talented team?
Weaknesses: What areas of your business need improvement? Are there internal processes that are hindering growth, or do you lack certain resources?
Opportunities: What external factors could be advantageous for your business? Are there emerging markets, trends, or technologies you can leverage?
Threats: What external factors pose a threat to your business? These could include competition, economic conditions, or regulatory changes.
We do this activity as a team with a whiteboard (either in person or virtual) and/or flip charts and spend an afternoon brainstorming each of these areas. Then, we post it in a location (either virtually or in person) where people can continue to add to it over the course of a couple of weeks. Finally, we research and add DATA to support each item.
Here is a SWOT we did with a client virtually on Mural.com
By conducting a SWOT analysis, you’ll have a clear picture of your business’s current state and be better equipped to plan for the future.
Want to participate in an interactive Business Planning workshop with other entrepreneurs? Join us on November 29, December 6th and December 13th from 11 am– 1 pm MST/1 pm – 3 pm EST, where we will SWOT your business, create growth priorities, and create an action plan for 2024.
NOTE: THIS WORKSHOP IS FREE FOR IGNITE LEARNING VIP MEMBERS.
EMAIL [email protected] TO SIGN UP.
Next week, we will take a look at how to create growth priorities from your SWOT.