Successful business owners know that a good business plan provides a foundation upon which they can build. There is an additional document small business owners should draft that can help them grow even more. A business growth plan is often overlooked and undervalued but this document can help catapult a business to the next level. Without a growth plan, many businesses stagnate and fail to thrive.
A business growth plan is a dynamic document that typically focuses on the next one to two years of your business. The growth plan should be adaptable so that business owners can amend it in response to changing market conditions. While a business plan outlines an overall vision for your business and how you would like it to mature, a growth plan focuses more strategically on revenue generation. To start a growth plan, Business Development Canada recommends focusing on three specific areas which are
- The strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities that are currently affecting or are projected to affect your business.
- Where you want your business to be in the next one to two years.
- A detailed and strategic action plan designed around revenue-generating goals.
Growth depends on increased revenue. There are several ways a business can increase revenue that go beyond simply selling more. In addition to boosting sales, businesses can look at increasing revenue by
- Identifying additional growth opportunities such as adding more products and services, expanding to another location, or targeting a new market.
- Reviewing staffing needs.
- Focusing on leveraging existing clients and customers by anticipating how their wants and needs will evolve over the next one to two years.
- Improving product margins.
An effective growth plan should also include a financial plan that provides a snapshot of the current financial situation including profit and loss statements, cash flow, operational costs, and a current break-even analysis. The financial plan also needs to include the projected capital that will be required to achieve the goals set by the growth plan.
A well-considered growth plan can help small business owners see beyond the day to day activities of the business so they can focus on strategic details that need attention in order for the business to grow. Acuity Business Group works with small business owners in the Okanagan and Calgary to help them create growth plans that are realistic, achievable, and successful. If you are ready to level up your business, contact Acuity Business Group to get started.