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Small Business Strategic Planning Using the Grove Model: Step 1 – Creating Your Graphic History
Posted by Lagerquist Accounting & Advisory
History has proven many times over that strategic planning and visioning are the magical combination for catapulting small businesses to unbelievable heights. Using the right tools, models, and consultants will help achieve success and massive growth over time. One such tool is the Grove Strategic Visioning Process, which provides a graphical representation of a company’s strategy and vision.
The Grove Strategic Visioning Process comprises five stages: examining your history, mapping your context, creating your SWOT (or SPOT) matrix, developing your story, and selecting your bold steps as an action plan. In this article, we’ll dive into stage one, and explore what it means to build your organization’s graphic history.
Creating Your Graphic History
You can easily create a graphic history using the Grove Strategic Visioning Process through the tools and templates they provide. Start by using the graphics guide to understand more about the fundamentals of creating graphic history. Get the right tools to be part of the process.
Invest the time to gather enough data from your business to include in the graphics. After all, this is your business’ story. When did you start your organization? What is its mission? What have been your successes and setbacks? Break the information down to the most relevant pieces and then use the visual planning kits to draft each concept. Once drafted, you can refine the designs and produce them in different graphic formats. After you are done, use the information to set or edit your strategies and implement them.
Importance of Using History During Strategic Planning
Strategic planning entails many elements that have to be analyzed well to secure a stable business foundation. Learning from decisions that have led to failures and those that have resulted in success is a great place to start your strategic planning process. The more historical data you have the better, since hindsight gives you a critical view of many of the issues you will continue to face, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of your operations to date. The following are some important factors to keep in mind:
Getting a Strategic Framework
Strategy formulation can be quite complex, depending on how big your business is and how fast you want it to develop. The parameters involved could be immense, but you focus and narrow them down if you have historical resources and insights to help guide your steps forward.
Organizational Flexibility and Resilience
Historical evidence provides a lot of flexibility for your business strategies since you can develop a unique strategic process that suits your operations. With a graphic history before you, you and your team can formulate a strategic plan that is lasting and able to move with the ever-changing economic environment. Building resilience is key to business survival and profitability, and knowing where you’ve been and how you got to where you are can help you stay ahead of the curve.
Graphics are a hugely effective method for synthesizing and presenting data, as well as leveraging data for insights and the building of action steps. Here are some of the ways your organization can benefit from the graphic history recommended in stage one of the Grove Strategic Visioning Process:
Graphic facilitation in your business can have a massive impact on every department. Setting up a visual presentation in your business’ operations and meetings is vital as it can open up more possibilities that you may not have seen in introductory strategic planning frameworks or in a purely written format. A graphic presentation helps groups focus on the tasks at hand and opens up eyes to new possibilities for progress and solutions.
As your organization grows and expands, there is a chance your branding will evolve as well. Starting with a graphic history can play a significant role in the strategic planning of branding for expansion. The way you want your company to be visualized will affect the performance of your products and services.
Historical graphics also give you a clear perspective on market trends and how they influence overall performance. Having a graphic outline of your past business operations and events can be a clear guideline on the major changes that need to be made to tap into other markets with minimal disruptions.
Documentation of Critical Events
Graphic models are a powerful way to keep records of your business history. The information can include milestones that you may have overcome, highest sales, data on exponential growth, and even getting into the stock market. Graphical displays of these achievements can also be a reminder that success is always possible; it takes time, and this perspective will help you set the strategic plans to get where you want to be.
Documentation can be done well by graphic illustrations and content that show the significant highlights of your company’s important events. The more explicit details about the event you can portray, the better you can see the potential that the business has from its establishment.
History of Delivered Products/Services Over Time
To know your services’ or product’s performance, historical records can give you the precise data you need. The information can help you gauge your market demand to know if you need to add more or reduce production. Having this context during your strategic planning will be cost-effective since it will help you avoid wasting resources.
Key Learnings from the Past
Learning from past events is a strategy that gives any firm an added advantage in its planning and operations. For your business, your strategic planning should not only apply the positives you have learned from the past, but it should also look at any mistakes you may have made. Having the learning in a historical representation is key to avoid repeating the same missteps.
Graphic historical models are a critical first step to your strategic visioning process. If utilized purposefully, the results can have many benefits to small businesses across industries and geographies. To make it easier to create graphic documentation of your business’s historical events, you can hire a graphic service or even train your employees to be part of the creation process. Lagerquist Accounting & Advisory is the place to seek professional guidance on how to come up with a strategic vision and plan. Contact us today!
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