What is a business foundation and how do you create one? How can you have a greater sense of what’s going on in your business?
In this episode, I’ll walk you through a business summary and strategic operations planning. If you’ve ever wondered how to be more organized and intentional about growing your business from the foundation up, then this episode is a must-listen.
Decades ago, starting a business including going to a physical bank with a written business plan, which was analyzed by a committee. In order to get funding for your business, a sound plan was essential.
A business plan is just as important today as it was decades ago. Why? When you have a business plan, you improve the trajectory of where your business is going and you have a must greater sense of what is and will happen in your future. You’ll also be more organized.
“A business plan is just as important today as it was decades ago.”
The Essentials of Your Business Foundation
1. Business Summary
This involves some thinking time! Your business summary is your true foundation and the reason you’re in business.
“Everything hinges on mission, vision, and values.”
A business summary is comprised of six parts:
- Mission – What do you do and who do you serve?
- Vision – Where will your business be in five years? What does success look like?
- Values – What characteristics and qualities are really important to you?
- Boundaries – What limits will you set around your work day or vacations?
- Avatar – Who is your ideal customer?
- Competitors – Who sells a similar product and how are you different?
“An uneducated owner is one that can easily be taken down very quickly.”
2. Future Accomplishments
What will you accomplish by this time next year? What does success look like for you in 12 months? Think about:
- Anecdotal feedback, i.e. your ideal testimonial
3. Your Financial Needs
How much do you need to bring in every month or quarter?
My husband and I sit down once a year and determine what I need to contribute to our household. We have three financial goals:
- The Good Number is what I need to contribute to cover the basics.
- The Better Number is just a step above from the the Good Number.
- The Best Number is a stretch goal that’s off the charts, and may only be reached with something like a launch. The Best Number isn’t something I’ll reach each month.
4. What You Sell
What are your offers? If you’re new in business, you may have quite a few products or services, but this should decrease over time.
Look at your offers then look at your Good Number. Determine how many products you need to sell to meet your Good Number.
These four pieces of your business foundation make up the backbone of your business. Now, let’s move into my proprietary framework.
5. Strategic Planning
These seven pieces comprise strategic operations planning for your business:
- Financial Steadiness
- Product Development + Innovation
- Scaling + Growing Your Team
- Operational Efficiencies
- Development + Growth
- Visibility + Marketing
- Customer + Client Experience
Look at all seven areas in your business then determine your priorities 1 through 7 because you only have so much time. HINT: Your financial steadiness is almost always the #1 priority.
6. What Does Success Look Like (KPIs)
Now you need to measure these priorities. Determine your key performance indicators (KPI) for these seven areas because you want to know if you’re succeeding. What metric will you use to validate that you’re doing well?
For example, let’s say Visibility + Marketing is your #2 priority. You want more eyes on your business so your KPI may be how many views you need on your website each week to earn a profit. You may need 30,000 page views to earn $15,000. Or you may determine the number of people you need at the top of your sales funnel to reach a financial goal.
How are you tracking what you’re doing so you can analyze data and then change course?
7. Your Annual Plan
The annual plan looks at your market. For example, if you sell paper planners, when does your audience start to think about planners? When is your prime selling cycle? Make notes from your competitors and see when they sell and promote.
You’ll also want to think through when you want to take vacation time. For me, I’m less productive in summer and Christmas. Document what you’re doing so you don’t plan launches when you’d rather be with your family on vacation.
You also want to be intentional with your marketing schedule. Think about what your offers are and when you’ll launch a new product.
Weekly Ops Activity
- Go to theopsauthority.com/foundation to access the free Trello board
- Complete your business foundation
- Screenshot and share inside the Ops Insiders group!
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