Tips to create a strategic Annual Plan：
- The annual plan must be in line with the corporate vision, mission and long-term goals.
- Understand better about yourself and the market to create the most suitable and competitive annual plan.
- Develop a plan that is flexible and adaptable to environmental change.
2023, Happy New Year!
It’s a new beginning! A fresh start to plan your goals in 2023, especially for all bosses out there.
However, the annual planning is not just a list of goals like “what is the yearly sales target?”, “how many branches will be expanded this year?” etc.
The annual plan should be based on the corporate visions and long-term goals to ensure the business is growing on track gradually. Hence, the plans should be executable and measurable for long-term monitoring.
Developing a good annual plan is not an easy task to do, but having sufficient understanding of yourself and the market trend, especially the target audience and corporate behavior, analyzing various internal and external information at the same time could ensure that it is on par with the business strategies and directions consistently.
Annual planning and business strategies vary based on each organization. Thus, there is no standardized format/ template or theory for it but we are happy to share some important tips for yearly planning as below:-
1. Set Realistic Goals
The goals you set should be practical and avoid setting too many goals at once, or else the ‘over-planning’ will take up huge resources (manpower, materials, expenses etc.) for each company to achieve the targets.
Hence, the company should identify and hit the balance by setting realistic yet challenging goals. It helps to check the ability and risk level for the company to achieve the goals.
2. Set up goal first, then follow by strategy
Annual planning is to formulate a yearly business strategy for improvement and growth, or to resolve company issues based on the market trend and corporate core values. The suggestions and proposals will be compiled and formulated as an executable plan.
For instance, the yearly target is to achieve fitness/weight loss. The first action to be taken should be understanding your health/physical condition and financial status (if you are planning to hit the gym). Secondly, is to arrange your own schedule, including dietary plans etc.
There are friends around who have participated in fitness courses, and there is a tailor-made weight loss plan that suits your physical fitness and ability. So, the next step is to execute this plan. Same goes to corporate’s annual planning which requires evaluation, planning and execution.
3. Develop strategies to make your business more competitive
We would like to remind all business owners to take the followings into consideration when setting up strategies:
First, the business goals and strategies must be adaptable into environmental change. For instance, the plan should be able to respond differently as when the current pandemic becomes better or worsens.
Second, the plan should make your business become more competitive in improving customer satisfaction and resources such as financial control, business development and management structure, instead of fully focusing on business expansion aggressively.
Third, focus on your business’s strengths and how you are different from your competitors. For example, if you are driving a tiny car but your wish is to have fast speed as a racing car (goal), then you would modify the car (strategy) to improve the performance. However, it will still not become a racing car no matter how much modification has been done. This explains that the driver is setting up his strategy based on his weakness.
Fourth, the strategy also provides a clear direction to help grow a business in a given way once the goals are achieved.
Fifth, whether the company has a clear benchmark (past performance or other competitors’ performance) for evaluating the efficacy of the strategy when it is implemented.
4. Setting up good annual plans take time
To set up good annual plans, be patient as it takes time doing research, evaluation, arrangement so we do not expect it to be completed in just a few hours… even an established organization could take a few months time to complete their annual planning.
So, no worries, you could start planning now since the new year has just begun!
We hope that the above mentioned could be your best reference in making annual plans although there is still a lot more to explore and understand better to develop effective plans.