Are “Shiny Objects” Distracting Your Business?
As business owners we have all received a phone call, a cold call visit or approached at a business function to get on a “great thing” or “shiny object.” These are opportunities that can distract us from the things we really need to focus on. It might be the “perfect” advertising medium. Or it might be the next best product or new service to offer or to venture into. But they might be shiny objects distracting your business.
Some of these opportunities may be worthy of your time and attention so how do you determine whether to pursue them or not? The key is to have these three essential plans in place: Strategic Plan, Business Plan and Marketing Plan.
Your Strategic Plan is your blue print of what your company will look like in 3 – 5 years. It should include items such as sale levels, organizational size and structure. It should also provide the big picture to help determine what strategic activities you and your team will focus on.
The Business Plan is a more detailed document that forecasts sales, expenditures, profits and actions items to support the Strategic Plan for the next 12 months. It is often broken down into monthly segments to provide specific actions items and milestones for the team to meet.
A Marketing Plan is a detailed document that defines the 4 P’s of Marketing for your company: Product, Price, Place and Promotion. This will become your blue print for how you will undertake to acquire and retain new and existing customers.
(for information on how to develop these plans go to www.empoweredbusiness.ca and download the free e-Book “Enterprise Builder”)
How to Avoid “Shiny Objects” Distracting Your Business
When presented with an opportunity ask yourself these two questions:
- Does it fit with the overall or specific direction set in the plans?
- Does the cost or investment fit into the budget?
If the answer to both questions is “yes” then it could be worth pursuing. If the answer is “no” then just say “no” to the shiny object and move on.
But what if the opportunity doesn’t fit into your existing plan but is very compelling? Simply open up your plan(s) and ask yourself “is this really worth changing my plan for”? If so, then be prepared to change your plan. This should be a painful process but if the opportunity is really that good it will be worth the pain. If it isn’t worth the pain then say “no” to the shiny object and move on.
With these three essential plans in place you will have more clarity and conviction when deciding whether to pursue a marketing or business opportunity. The reduction in wasted time and resources chasing the “shiny objects” will make you, your team and your company more effective and profitable.
Tony Malyk, Vancouver Business Performance Coach. Ph.604.374.5934 or email firstname.lastname@example.org