Check Please! Chapter 7: Check Your Plan!
It is said, "Want to make God laugh? Tell him your plans." I've seen that so often - indeed, 2020 has been pretty much a "180" on a lot of plans.
But "unprecedented" matters aside, how do you know if the plan you've created is the right one? Specifically speaking on business matters, developing your brand, promoting your value, how do you know you're on the right track?
We have a saying around TAG Art - "eliminate the suck." It sounds extreme and often irrational, but it's a great barometer. If we're to distill down to the essence of what we are, our values and our goals as a company and we find certain elements that we CAN eliminate or adjust to eliminate, we DO. Such is the essence of strategic planning - what do you want and how are you going to get there?
The first 5 years? How about the first 15? We continue to have "DUH" moments, even in the best of planning. We're in our 21st year (the company is old enough to drink! Cue 2020!) and we still see opportunities for growth.
This formula is not for every business model. Certain categories such as restaurant and retail are often turned on their head despite having a strong plan. Change happens and some are collateral damage to the change - internet shopping? Who knew?
In a "normal" year we still have plagues, scandals, seasons of terrible weather, and the pattern continues. I believe that we'll emerge stronger, that we'll adapt and overcome AND have a new basis for comparison to "plan" for what lies ahead. The question remains - not "how will we weather the storm?" but "when the next storm comes, what will we do?"
As another wise man once said, "either you kick its butt, or it kicks yours. There is no 3rd outcome."
Cue "Rocky" music - on to 2021!!