Newsletter Sign-Up

I once had a sales manager who said, “Nobody plans to fail, they just fail to plan.” I could also add, “Nobody likes to take the time to plan, so they procrastinate!” 

In previous issues, I’ve talked about the importance of re-igniting the passion you have for the work you are doing, aligning your values and those of your employees with the organizational culture, finding ways to work with purpose while making a difference, and aligning the talents in your company with the tasks. 

Now it’s time to talk about creating and implementing the 10-year, 3-year, and 1- year strategic plans.   Once you have a clear vision, it’s much easier to develop the tactics to make it come alive!   

Take a moment to put that vision in your mind.  Now ask:  For this vision to become a reality, what does my business look like in 10 years?  What sales revenues are we generating?  What’s the organizational structure?  How many employees will be needed to meet the objectives? Where will the business be located?  Will we own or rent the space?  What’s the product or service mix?   As CEO or President, what will my role be in the company?  Will I actually be part of the day-to-day operation or will I be working “on” the business and not “in” it?

With the 10-year view in mind, move forward to 3 years from now and ask the same questions.  Three years is a workable time frame.  It creates a sense of urgency, but gives you time to make some significant progress.

Now the question becomes:  “If that’s what my business looks like in 3 years, what are the five major goals we must accomplish in the next year to put us on track?”  In Verne Harnish’s book, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits, he tells the story of a consultant who was working with John D. Rockefeller.  Rockefeller told the consultant he would be paid based on the value of his idea.  The consultant said to have only five major goals at any one time and clearly identify the most important one; the one that if all else fails, you achieve.  For that Rockefeller paid him $25,000, which was a lot of money in the early 20th century!

Now that you have the 5 major goals identified, run them past your management team.  Ask for comments and refine the goals as needed.  Then make sure you communicate those goals to everyone in the organization, post them on the wall, and refer to them regularly.

Finally, it’s time to create a 90-day action plan.  For each of the five major goals, identify the following:

Specific Action Step (for example: make 5 prospecting calls per day)

Measurement  (example: report sheet of the results of the calls)

Timeline (When is it due? When is it begun?)

Person Accountable for its’ completion  (May not be the one actually doing the work.)

Reality Check  (Is this a realistic expectation based on current resources, budget, manpower, technology etc.?)

Priority:  (Not every action item is equally important.  Identify those that are crucial, important, or just a nice thing if time permits.) 

 Put the action plan in writing and distribute it to all those who are involved.  Utilize it as a progress checkup at every staff meeting.  At the end of the 90 days, review what you accomplished and create a plan for the next 90 days. 


1.    Schedule a day in your planner to go  away from  the office to work on this.

2.    Honor that date with yourself!

3.    Ask the questions outlined above and brainstorm possible scenarios.

4.    Schedule a management meeting to review your observations and finalize the 1-year goals.

5.    Schedule quarterly management meetings to review the accomplishments and set the actions for the following quarter.



© The Inspired Business Center :: site design by Brand Iron