What is the long-term vision for your company? Don’t have one? Without a long-term vision, your business will be harder to direct, strategize, and grow. Signs of a business lacking a long-term vision are obvious: lack of direction, little to no growth, indecision, costly delays, etc. A strong vision of where you want to be – and attainable goals to help you get there – is essential.
Why A Plan IS Important
Think you can get on well enough without a long-term strategy and goals? Here are six reasons why your lack of vision will stunt or kill your business.
Lack of Vision Problem #1: Overextension
Okay, a lot of people like to run a company and take on as much business as they can. While you will want to have multiple avenues of revenue, you should not become too diverse in your offerings, too quickly. For most businesses, the focus should be on quality, not quantity. Overextension in a business can lead to loss of revenue, cuts, and failure. A clear vision will keep you focused on what works, allowing you the freedom to reject or trim anything that doesn’t contribute towards your business strategy.
Lack of Vision Problem #2: Stagnation
A strong vision helps you construct a solid marketing strategy; no vision means a convoluted business plan, with an outline of steps that is poorly planned and ineffective. When you have a clear strategy for your business, you can better define your market, the ideal client, and what steps you need to take to reach greater success. For example, let’s say you sell running shoes and want your shop to become the go-to store trusted by the running community. So, your ideal client is an athletic individual who often runs 5k’s to marathons, and therefore you will be placing ads in running magazines, handing out branded bottled water at local races, and frequently posting resources and running news on social media. Focused marketing means your business will grow, and you can’t do that without a vision of what you want your business to become.
Lack of Vision Problem #3: Disconnection
Sometimes a person running a company may become disconnected from their employees and contractors. When this happens, it’s easy to lose money by paying employees who don’t know where the company stands or what they should be doing. Fortunately, if your employees involved in the strategy process and planning, you can have them well connected to the direction and purpose of the company. So, if you want to keep your employees on the same page and enthusiastic, cast a grand vision they can get behind in the strategy process.
Lack of Vision Problem #4: Wasted Profit
Making a profit is foundational for any business. Many owners and entrepreneurs think that all they have to do is make as much money as possible in sales, while overlooking how they could increase profits by maintaining great profit margins. A well-defined business plan allows you to know exactly where the money needs to go, where it is currently going, and what you can change to meet your financial goals. A long-term vision is essential for increasing profit – if you don’t know what financial metrics you’d like to hit, you are very likely wasting money that could have been added to your net gain.
Lack of Vision Problem # 5: No Investors
If you don’t have a solid, long-term strategy, you will lose out on a potential buyout or investors. You need to know what you want to do with your company, why you are excited about the direction it’s headed, and how to practically reach those goals, if you want to attract new investors. If you haven’t thought out your business vision and created a well-researched, effective strategy, potential investors won’t see anything appealing about your company and decide to pass.
Lack of Vision Problem #6: Time Wasting
Picture this: it’s morning and you are driving to work. You know the fastest way to get to your workplace, a route that will save you fuel expense and maximize the time you spend earning your wages. Or you can drive to work via an indirect route, one that uses up far more gas than required and gets you to work late, decreasing the time you can earn money. You would be crazy to choose the latter as the better option! Time is money, everyone knows this. Yet far too many business owners don’t take the time to strategize the route they want their business to take, often wasting time trying to reach goals that they could realize much sooner a clear strategy. If you have a clear vision for your business and an intelligent strategy for reaching your goals, you can confidently proceed knowing you’ve devised a route that doesn’t waste your time.
Not sure what your vision is or should be?
If you need assistance casting an effective, long-term business strategy, Intigro offers both Outsourced CFO services and Strategy Integration using The Next Level Navigator Process. We also highly recommend George Black’s book: “Dear Mr. A – Letters revealing the secrets of an entrepreneur“, as it contains solid advice regarding business strategy and a step by step process that will take your business to its Next Level.Check out “Dear Mr A”!