If you’re trying to create a profitable company that people love, we recommend creating a 12-month business plan around this concept every year. This isn’t just your typical business plan that you use to secure loans.
Instead, you’ll create this 12-month plan to realign your values and mission.
A major part of making your business a success is remembering the value and mission that you set when opening your company. Unfortunately, it’s easy to get distracted by shiny objections or new offerings, and these values and missions can slowly fade away.
When you know how to set up business plan yearly goals that align with creating a business people love, it will help you:
- Attract new customers
- Retain customers
- Continue to grow
12-Month Business Plan to Realign Your Values and Mission
Review Your Company’s Values and Mission
A unified vision for your business is necessary to meet your company’s value and mission statement. This is a time to sit down and reflect on your value and mission to:
- Reinforce your business’ vision to your employees
- Review communications to make sure they align with your values and mission
Often, different employees will have different ideas of your values and mission. So, sit down with important stakeholders to ensure that all parties have a clear vision of your company’s goals.
Customer and Employee Feedback
If you want to keep your customers happy, you must listen to their feedback. A good starting point for your plan is to review all of your customer feedback and implement changes based on the bad feedback.
Perhaps shipping is too slow, or items are breaking in transit.
Take steps to improve on these key areas where customers are having issues. Inversely, also look at what customers love about your business and continue doing the same. You can learn a lot from feedback that you can then use in your planning for fulfillment, distribution, marketing, and more.
Next, be sure to consider all of your employee feedback, too. You can send out employee surveys that ask:
- What went well for the employee in the last year
- What improvements/changes the employee would like to see made
You can also gain a lot of insight into what steps your business needs to take in the coming twelve months through year-end planning for your business.
Analyze and Forecast Sales
Company mission and vision are critical, but you can only meet this vision by analyzing and forecasting sales. This is the time when you want to look through your books to determine where sales are coming in and being lost.
Have you lost certain customer segments? If so, can you pinpoint why?
Look for underserved areas or what’s lacking in segments where sales are being lost. Customer feedback can help here, too. When you consider the input, you may find answers to why sales are being lost and how to forecast future sales.
If your internal sales forecasts are low, try and determine why.
Perhaps sales are lost in a dying market segment, but if you’re losing sales in a thriving market, you need to consider your company’s vision.
That being said, we have a whole guide to growing your business. If you’re looking to do that, check out grow.cobbcpa.com to grab your free guide!
Marketing Channels and Approach
Marketing channels and the way that you reach customers may change. Think back to the time of newspaper ads, where many businesses were built. Now, marketing channels and approaches have evolved both online and offline.
Multichannel approaches need to be taken in today’s marketing. It’s essential to look over your marketing channels and strategy to:
- Remove marketing channels that aren’t producing results
- Consider increasing budgets for high-performing marketing channels
- Create cohesion across marketing channels
You’ll want to examine your marketing efforts to ensure that your marketing is honest, reaches the right customers, and sends the right message. If you run a more significant business with its own internal marketing team, be sure that you sit down with them at this time to discuss your goals and vision.
Finances and Profitability
When your vision is being met and properly executed on, it should lead to steady financials and profitability. You’ll want to review your books to understand where money is coming in and where expenditures occur. This is important to keep your business running smoothly.
Lean business practices should be a part of every business.
What are Lean practices?
These practices help you optimize your business by:
- Eliminating waste, which improves profitability
- Optimizing business operations
- Delivering products quickly and efficiently
- Building a quality business
The entire idea of a Lean business is to understand customer value and to continue improving key processes.
You can use this time to realign finances to training or product improvement and lower funding in areas that aren’t helping your business reach its goals. Profitability will follow as long as you maintain adequate profit margins.
Operations and Management
Your business’s operations and management need to know and enforce your company’s vision at all times. Managers should be in charge of making sure that all employees:
- Understand the company’s mission and vision
- Follow internal protocols and procedures
- Train to create an internal standard of quality
Training may be an essential part of your operations and management. As employees enter and leave your workforce, each new employee needs to be trained properly. You want to make sure that training is still taking place, is updated, and enforced. You’re also want to provide ongoing training and development to help ensure people are feeling fulfilled in their roles.
Fulfillment and Distribution
Finally, when you’re at the end of your plan, you’ll want to look at your fulfillment and distribution. You’ll want to consider:
- Markets that aren’t served or underserved
- Analyze whether these markets are a market opportunity
- Consider fulfillment channels, speed, efficiency, and accuracy
If customers complain of slow shipping speed, issues with broken products, or services not being delivered as described, you’ll want to dig into your current fulfillment and see where changes can be made. You may be able to make internal changes, add new fulfillment partners or put protocols in place to correct these issues.
A 12-month business plan can help you realign your business to make sure that you’re meeting the demands of consumers while staying true to your business’s mission and values. You can refer to this plan throughout the year as a blueprint of what you can be doing to continue growing your business into a success.
Over time, you’ll continue to grow your client or customer base while creating a profitable company that people love!