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Pre-planning, or the planning you do before undertaking any endeavor, is critical. Here, we discuss why pre-planning the business you hope to start will lead you to building a better company in the long run.
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You don’t undertake a business endeavor without some sort of a plan. Moreover, what distinguishes a successful business from an unsuccessful one is the planning you do before you ever write anything down.
Of course, a clearly defined business plan will be important. But the earliest stage is not the time for that. With pre-planning —the planning you do in your mind before you write your business plan —you will glimpse the bigger picture. Planning beforehand will help you have early clarity about your hoped-for company’s future goals and achievements.
The 34th president of the United States, Dwight Eisenhower, said, “Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” Further, he stated, “The planning process demands the thorough exploration of options and contingencies.”
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This quote offers a notion about what effective planning is. Pre-planning is not about writing down a plan on a piece of paper. Rather, it is about thinking. What makes this early type of planning so valuable is that it will lead you to contemplate business strategies from different angles and perspectives. Pre-planning will help you come up with actions to make your business succeed—before you even get started.
Pre-Planning Facilitates Better Allocation of Resources
All organizations utilize resources that are limited in nature. The planning process addresses the way these finite resources need to be allocated so that the organization can attain its goals. It maximizes productivity and prevents wasting of resources.
Pre-Planning Helps You to Focus
Planning helps you decide what is important for the business. It helps you to prioritize tasks by deciding beforehand what’s important. With a clear plan in place, you can focus on tasks and assignments that are the most important for the business, rather than trying to waste valuable time and energy figuring out what needs to be done after your business is up and running.
Needless to say, pre-planning and then carrying your plan out is much more efficient than having to decide what to do as you go. It is helpful when running day-to-day operations.
For example, Grace Griffin is an academic writer. She guides students to write dissertations in sections. First, she instructs students to understand the context of their dissertation, which leads them to their dissertation abstract. Thereafter, the structure and all the other vital parts of the dissertation fall into place. Basically, dividing a big project such as a dissertation into smaller pieces helps you understand things with more focus.
Similarly, understanding the context of your business, or pre-planning, will guide you toward establishing a business plan, then running your business day-to-day.
Planning Beforehand Will Lead Your Organization to Succeed
An essential part of the pre-planning process involves setting goals. The right goals will challenge everyone in the company to perform better. Goals must be lofty but realistic. Setting goals stimulates activity within the organization. Otherwise, everyone will become complacent and competitors will overtake the company.
Later, reminding team members about set goals will serve as a wake-up for employees and managers who underperform. When a company’s results don’t meet expectations, managers can analyze the disparity between predicted results and actual results. They can then come up with solutions when profits are depressed.
It Mitigates Risk and Uncertainty
Even for the largest corporations, it is impossible to control the economic conditions around them. Unpredictable situations must be dealt with quickly before they can wreak further havoc.
Pre-planning helps you predict possible risk scenarios and develop strategies to deal with contingencies successfully. Events unfold at a rapid pace in the world. Therefore, you need to pre-plan so you can quickly adapt to changing conditions.
It Sets the Stage for Teamwork
Pre-planning leads the way toward teamwork and cooperation. Then, as the planning process concludes, employees learn their roles and responsibilities. They understand the contributions they can make collaboratively. They can also learn how meaningful their work is and be motivated by that to perform better. Workers are less likely to be disgruntled when they have had a say in the running of the operations.
Pre-Planning Allows for the Discovery of More Effective Strategies
If you diligently pre-plan, you can correctly assess the strengths and weaknesses of your organization and your competitors before you begin. A scrutiny of the market may also divulge new opportunities for your organization, such as lower barriers to entry and niche customer groups that you can market your product to.
Pre-Planning Encourages You to Think Creatively
It is hard to be creative when you are running day-to-day operations and you have to come up with creative solutions on the fly. If you don’t already have a plan in place you could miss opportunities for quickly resolving challenges.
But pre-planning helps you to think outside the box for your business before problems arise. Without pre-planning, you could fall into a workplace routine that doesn’t allow for creative problem-solving. In fact, you might not even be able to come up with an action to take your business to the next level.
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Pre-Planning Lays the Groundwork for Your Business Plan
After the pre-planning stage, you will write a business plan. Business plans are there to help you navigate the future of your business. The purpose of writing a business plan is to record any decisions you have made so you can go back to them moving forward. In your business plan, you will also establish your business strategy to help your business grow.
Your written business plan will allow you to prioritize and work toward goals that will be the most helpful to your business. A formal business plan will also help you to make more realistic decisions as situations arise.
Next Write Your Business Plan
There are certain things that a business plan typically includes. That doesn’t mean that it is necessary to include everything we suggest here. Write your business plan however you see fit.
State Your Vision and Mission
After the pre-planning phase, start your business plan by writing the vision and mission for your company. Your vision statement is what you foresee for your organization, and your mission is what you hope to achieve and contribute. Having a clearly defined mission and vision helps you attract the right kinds of customers and gets you focused.
Plan How You Will Earn Profits
How will your business be monetized? What products will you sell? Describe the products you will sell. State whether they will be physical or digital. Then, determine your revenue streams. Are there any that you want to add or drop? This will help you develop a plan to maximize your earnings.
Analyze Your Market
Do plenty of market research. Find out who your competitors are. Learn about their products and services as well as their customers. Also, learn about any barriers to entry in the market and think of ways to overcome them. Find out your competitors’ market share and estimate the market share you can attain.
Develop a Marketing Strategy
Marketing is crucial to any business. In other words, how will you market your product? Through paid advertising? Social media influencers? Get some information on your target market. Focus both on customer acquisition and customer retention. Develop your marketing plan accordingly.
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Let Pre-Planning Lay the Groundwork for Your Business
Remember, the plan itself is not all that important. The significance of a business plan lies not in the written words, but in the process of planning itself. What is valuable is the brainstorming that takes place before you come up with a plan. In other words, the pre-planning you do before writing your business plan makes all the difference in the world.
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