Companies are typically founded with a business plan, including Proforma financials and some capital. The initial efforts are focused on hitting the plan to keep the business running through start-up and become cash flow positive. Once successfully through start up the business plan transitions to an annual operating plan. The third business phase is developing a strategic plan based on the business that was built versus the business that was initially anticipated. This strategic plan should guide the operating planning and decisions about the direction and investments in the business annually.
Strategic planning while important, often takes a back seat to the day to day rigors of operating the business. Without a solid strategy, leadership falters, communication suffers and opportunities often languish.