Business Planning Matters

In the last post I mentioned 2 items that every business should PLAN.

Today, I don’t feel like writing a long post so I’ll tell what a plan is NOT.

Making a series of snap decisions is not making a plan. Plans require at least SOME supporting data.

A “To Do” list is not a plan. That’s a list of things you know need to be done.

I work with too many people who think they can make a plan in an hour by just “deciding things”. That’s not a plan. That is a recipe for problems. Hasty decisions lead to problems and waste.

Now that we’re clear that planning is not making a bunch of snap decisions, let’s look at the basics of what makes a plan.

A plan needs a purpose. Why do I want to do this? What is the GOAL?

What steps need to be taken to reach the goal?

What are the costs that go with these steps?

What are the risks?

Coming full circle, what is the return on investment?


“I will increase marketing to increase sales” is not a plan.

I will spend $2,000 on marketing, by offering my customers a discount, in or to generate a sales increase of $10,000 is closer to being a plan.

Record and track your spend and your results.

Can you keep your costs on budget?

And most important of all, did you accurately predict your results?

If you cannot answer “yes” to both of those questions, you’re not planning and trouble is ahead.

Snap decisions almost always lead to increase costs with little or no return.


Chris Reich, TeachU