For serial entrepreneurs and long-time business owners or a management team, knowing your Strategic Planning from your Business Planning is a fundamentally significant part of the overall success of your venture.
So what exactly is a Strategic Plan?
It’s a type of business plan. If you’re an already established business, a strategic plan comes into play when you’re ready to grow your business and need to implement a scheme which offers detailed actions that take place over a few years and help you to achieve your company’s goals.
And what about a Business Plan?
A business plan is an initial plan drafted for a new business. Whether designed in order to obtain funding or direct business operations. It can include anything from an organogram to a marketing plan, to financial projection, to the target market and finally–the purpose or “aims” of the company.
And as far as timeframes are concerned, a strategic plan generally covers a period of 3 to 5+ years, whereas a business plan is normally no more than 1 year.
The Main Differences:
A business plan covers the “who” and “what” of the business.
The strategic plan gives us the “how” and “when.”
In broader terms, the business plan tells us who by showing us:
- Who is running the business? What makes them qualified? What do they bring to the table that adds value?
- Who is the competition? What do they offer and what makes you different?
- Who is your customer? How big is the market? Where are they? What do they want and how will you give it to them? Also, how will you connect with your market?
The business plan answers the “what” by telling us exactly what the business provides and how they provide. Product and services and operations are all explained so that we understand how the claims are being met and if the business is run efficiently.
The strategic plan, on the other hand, lines out the following:
- How will you measure success? What metrics matter and how will you track them?
- What needs to happen so you can achieve your goals? What resources do you need to get there?
- When? When will each activity take place, who will do it, and when do you need to reach specific milestones?
In conclusion, a business needs both the business plan and the strategic plan to give it a clear foundation and a sense of direction, as well as to assist in identifying key players and resources to seek out and acquire more.
Are you ready to consult with the experts about developing your business? Speak to Claricent about our business consulting services, today!