A New Year, a New Business Plan?

New Year’s is a time for personal reflection, for recommitting to old goals and making resolutions. But what about your business? Like you, it probably could use some fine-tuning. The first of the year is the perfect time to make a new business plan, one that sets new objectives and determines the goals most needed to move the company forward. Scheduling some time at the beginning of this year to create a new business plan will give you renewed faith in your enterprise and the motivation to implement some much-needed changes.

Plan for the New Five (or Ten…or 15) Years

The way people do business is changing all the time. That’s why making a five-year plan is so important. The plan lets you …
  • take stock of where the business is right now
  • develop a clear break-down of your goals and the steps needed to attain each goal
  • consider how variables like supply chain and e-commerce will affect your business within the targeted period
  • determine a set of key performance indicators (KPIs) that you will use to figure out how effective the plan is at achieving your goals.
It also allows you to account for changes you want to make in your personal life in the coming years. Is it time to start scaling down or preparing for a transfer of power? A five-year business plan allows you to break the transition down into a manageable step-by-step process that you can revisit periodically in order to make minor tweaks.

Realign Your Core Values

Corporate values are an extension of their owners’ personal values. But when businesses grow and take on new acquisitions, partners, and interests, sometimes the business strays from its original core values, and there is no alignment between day-to-day operations and the company’s mission statement. Because misalignment can affect both customer and employee satisfaction, which can in turn affect productivity and profitability, an important part of making a new business plan is to examine the company’s core values and make sure that the new goals are in keeping with the company’s mission. It may be that your mission statement itself needs to change to reflect larger changes in the company.

Revisit Your Business Structure

If part of your five-year plan is to expand — and who doesn’t want to grow — one thing you might be wrestling with is the need to change the underlying structure of your business. Typically, businesses move from a simple structure, like a sole proprietorship, to a more complex one, like an LLC or S-Corp, when they hire employees, bring on investors, or require more liability coverage. You might also choose a new business structure if you want to change the company’s mission. For instance, a traditional corporation may decide to seek to get certified as a B-Corp if they have decided to make environmental stewardship or worker rights an integral part of their business operation. Likewise, an LLC may want to transition from a member-managed to a manager-managed structure as their business grows and requires more of a top-down, or corporate, leadership model. Creating a new business plan can be straightforward. Sometimes, though, the changes you want to make call for revisions to the original documents or require you to register a whole new business structure. For professional advice on how to proceed, contact one of the qualified Maryland business law attorneys at Lusk Law, LLC to set up a consultation.