Over the past couple of years, the 100 day plan has become my most requested service. It’s a great tool to quickly instigate a business transformation process.

 And, in these current economic choppy waters, it’s a great way to quickly refocus or reinvent a business that is no longer viable in its current state.

 So in response to several emails, here is a “do-it-yourself’ version.

 This 100 day plan is suitable for:

  • Commercial business operations
  • Professional service providers
  • Non-profit organisations

The first two steps are vision focused. To be able to move forward, you need to get clear on what your business or organisation would need to “be like” to survive and thrive in this new economy.

Step one: Make a short list of the major “functions” or processes that are the basis on how you operate or do business. Typically, these might be marketing, service delivery, human resources (or team), financial management and administration etc.

 Keep it as simple as possible by focusing on just the major functions. Look to identify the three to seven functions that are the fundamentals or workhorse of your business or operation.

 Step 2: Get a clean sheet of paper.  Select the first function from your list. Then write a paragraph or two that describes what it would look like and be like if this part of your business was operating very effectively ? in the current economic climate.

 Very-very important. This is a “WHAT” exercise, not a “HOW-TO” exercise. Do *not* write down any ‘how-to’ methods or solutions. Keep your descriptions result, outcome or performance related. Keep in mind, you are creating a “Vision”. A business operation vision.

 For example, for your Marketing Function, you may say something like: “We have a great understanding of what our customers want in terms of value for money.”

 Or you might say: “We are able to relate well to our clients and describe the benefits or our services in ways that motivates them to buy.”

 At this stage, it is not necessary that you know how to do this. The how-to solutions will be worked on later. Your job at this stage is to understand what excellent operational competency would look like for your particular business type.

 Repeat this procedure for each of the major functions you listed in Step 1.

 If possible, see if you can keep this to a one page Vision Document. Two pages would be the maximum.

On completion of these two steps, you should be able to answer the “Number One” strategic question: “How would I/we know if our business was operating successfully?”

In part 2 of this blog post, I will show you a simple way to manage all of the “How-to” solutions.  

Andrew Smith

The Business Plan Guy