Last week, we painted the picture of the scariest type of business owner. To recap, this business owner is one who doesn’t manage his or her energy well. Without first taking care of themselves, these execs can’t take care of their companies.
These frightening CEOs admit to not getting enough sleep, having trouble focusing during the workday, and not taking enough time to strategically plan the company’s next moves.
That last action is key: the scariest business owner doesn’t take enough time to strategically plan. Without strategic planning, a business is as good as gone.
Why Strategic Planning Matters
Your company might have grown to the size it is today without much planning on your part, but how long will that last? It can’t last forever and here’s why.
1. The world is constantly evolving.
The world is constantly changing, which means that your products and services must evolve with it if you want to remain competitive. Meeting the needs of your customers today is great for business today, but you need to be looking toward the future if you hope to continue to make money.
Part of Apple’s success can be attributed to the launch of products today that revolutionized the industry. Instead of doing what everybody else was doing, the company was creating the products of tomorrow. Think about the iPhone or iPad. Both devices seemed ahead of their time when they were introduced. Do you think Apple would have invented those devices if it didn’t set aside time to think creatively?
2. Your competitors are also evolving.
In addition to keeping up with the ever-changing world, you also need to consider your competitors, who are likely adapting to the market. If your company doesn’t evolve and your competition does, how do you expect to retain current customers? Your services or products will seem outdated to them.
3. You will have to retire someday.
Besides your company’s health, planning is also very important in regards to your retirement. What will you do when you decide you no longer want to work? Do you want to hand over the reigns of the company you put your blood, sweat, and tears in for years without getting a dime in return? I’m guessing not.
In order to get top dollar for your company when you’re ready to, you need to do two things:
- Take care of yourself. If you’re not sure how well you are doing, take the energy audit to get a better idea.
- Set aside time and begin to think about your exit plan.
Starting to plan can sometimes be the hardest part, but something is better than nothing. Doing something – even if it’s just learning about the process of selling a business – is better than avoiding it. Start small and your efforts will generate progress over time.
To help you get started, here are some free resources that will teach you about exit planning:
- Building And Exiting A Desirable Business
- Five Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Your Company
- Intangible Assets And Your Company: Identify What Sets Your Business Apart To Get Maximum Value Out of Your Sale
- Exit Planning Basics: What You Need To Know Before You Start
- Selling A Business – Part I: The Evaluation
- Selling A Business – Part II: Finding Buyers