Mark Blezard says, 'Tear up your business plan'
Plans are great, so long as you change them!
Business plans can be dangerous. How many times have you heard this, "Why did I do that? Because it is what we have always done!"
Okay, business plans are not all bad but you must, periodically, factor in a 'challenge point.' This is when you, and fellow managers, sit down and challenge what is in the plan, and ask yourselves, 'is it time to try some different moves?'
The problem with big, old corporations is that they tend to lose their entrepreneurial spirit. Sticking to the old plan is comfortable. No one gets fired. So how do you reignite the flame? How do you get the entrepreneurial flare back?
In previous blogs, I wrote about spending 10% of your prospecting time trying something completely new. If all your leads come from LinkedIn, try a direct-mail test. I also wrote an article on product diversification – how to find new markets with existing products. Well, this is very similar, just called a 'challenge meeting.' Every member of your team has to come to the meeting and challenge one stable part of your organisation. To make it productive, they must also have an alternative suggestion. From accounting, production, to sales. Everything is up for a challenge.
There are no losers in these meetings. If a challenge doesn't make sense, you know that the existing plan works. However, if you don't spend a little time trying to play a new game, you will never know if the current one is your best effort.