Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies
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Simply put, a strategic plan is the formalized road map that describes how your company executes the chosen strategy. A plan spells out where an organization is going over the next year or more and how it’s going to get there. Typically, the plan is organization-wide or focused on a major function, such as a division or a department.

A strategic plan is a management tool that serves the purpose of helping an organization do a better job, because a plan focuses the energy, resources, and time of everyone in the organization in the same direction.

If you’re thinking, “Hey, I’ve got this great book on business plans, so I’ll just use that to form my strategic plan,” be aware that strategic plans and business plans aren’t the same concepts.

A strategic plan is a management tool that C-level managers need to master and is for established businesses and business owners who are serious about growth. It also does the following:

  • Helps build your competitive advantage

  • Communicates your strategy to staff

  • Prioritizes your financial needs

  • Provides focus and direction to move from plan to action

A business plan, on the other hand, is a planning tool for new businesses, projects, or entrepreneurs who are serious about starting a business. A business plan

  • Helps define the purpose of your business

  • Helps plan human resources and operational needs

  • Is critical if you’re seeking funding

  • Assesses business opportunities

  • Provides structure to ideas

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book author:

Erica Olsen is cofounder and COO of M3 Planning, Inc., a firm dedicated to developing and executing strategy. M3 provides consulting and facilitation services, as well as hosts products and tools such as MyStrategicPlan for leaders with big ideas who want to empower and focus their teams to achieve them.

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