Be Prepared with Plan A...B and C
As we are in full swing into the new year, it's natural to reflect on the past and make resolutions for the future. For businesses, this can mean setting goals, creating a plan for the coming year, and expanding or further developing your business. While it's important to focus on best-case scenarios, it's also wise to plan for potential problems and be prepared with multiple solutions. A clear vision and focus on the best-case scenario (Plan A) can help build momentum for a successful new year, but it's also important to consider potential challenges and have backup plans in place (Plans B and C). Strategic planning may not fully prepare you for unexpected challenges, but it can help you stay on track and move forward on the path to success.
An economic recession is one example of a scenario that businesses may face in the coming year. In this case (Plan B), it's important to have strategies in place to minimize the impact on your business. This could include cost-cutting measures, diversifying your revenue streams, seeking out new opportunities for growth, or focusing on your current business to weather the storm of a recession.
Worst-case scenarios, such as natural disasters or major market shifts, might require Plan C to be put into action. In these situations, it's important to have a disaster recovery plan that includes back-up systems and processes, as well as strategies for quickly adapting to a changing environment.
Scenario planning can help you take your business to the next level. Instead of just reacting to events, you can proactively make them happen. It's helpful to brainstorm strategies now that will help you overcome obstacles as they arise. This could include identifying your strengths and finding ways to leverage them, seeking out partnerships and collaborations, and staying agile and adaptable.
To plan for growth by 25% and achieve this goal, businesses can consider implementing several strategies and using scenario planning as a method to identify potential challenges and opportunities. This process involves four steps:
Step 1: Brainstorm over a fixed period (18-36 months) to consider what might happen in the future. Scenarios could include an increase or decrease in profits, or little to no change in profit.
Step 2: Identify trends and possible disruptive factors that could impact the business, such as changes in interest rates, technological innovations, or societal disruptions like Covid-19.
Step 3: Create a template to consider how these changes could affect the business. Possible questions to consider include: "What will happen if this change occurs?" and "What will happen if this change does not occur?"
Step 4: Incorporate the scenarios into the overall planning process, including creating contingency plans (Plan B and Plan C) in case of unexpected challenges.
By following these steps and staying flexible and adaptable, businesses can increase their chances of achieving their growth goal of 25% or more.
In addition to having backup plans in place, it's also important to prioritize resilience and sustainability in your business. This means being proactive in addressing potential issues and finding ways to prepare for potential challenges or setbacks. By planning ahead and staying flexible, you can set your business up for success in the new year and beyond. For a free Scenario Planning tool visit: seekingsuccession.com/scenario-planning-download/
Kendall Rawls knows and understands the challenges that impact the success of a family-owned business. Her unique perspective comes not only from their educational background; but, more importantly, from her experience as a second-generation family member employee of The Rawls Group - Business Succession Planners. For more information, visit www.rawlsgroup.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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