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Checklist for Business Objectives & Strategies

June 16, 2010

by Tom Burgum, Lancaster SCORE 

 

 

Here’s a checklist I developed to help my SCORE clients evaluate their readiness to prepare a business plan.  It’s not about the plan, which will change constantly.  It’s about the planning process … and answers to the questions:

SCORE Marketing Expert Tom Burgum

“So what?  Now what?  Why you?”

  •  
    • Segment customers to more effectively meet their needs
      • Create customer value and competitive advantage by segment
      • Determine ‘cost to serve’ for each segment and key customer
      • Prioritize and focus on top opportunities
      • Grow market share … profitably

 

  •  
    • Offer distinctive solutions
      • Accelerate the introduction of successful new products, services
        and systems
      • Differentiate customer benefits/value from competition
      • Sell solutions, not just products and/or services
      • Sell the ‘experience’ you offer
      • Focus on the buying process, not the selling process
      • Build ‘switching costs’ [what customers would lose if they switched to your competitor]        

    • Enable a best-in-class, empowered, focused workforce
      • Continuously improve the capabilities, capacities and effectiveness
        of your team, including ‘outside’ accountants, lawyers, etc.
      • Engage employees as ‘owners’—what’s in it for them?  Do they have a stake in the outcome … or are they just ‘coin –operated’
      • Recognize and reward contributions
      • Earn their trust
    • Maintain an unassailable cost advantage vs. your competition
      • Best-cost supplier
      • Invest in people and technology
      • Focus on continuous improvement
      • Focus on return on investment
      • Focus on “ROT’ – return on time.  It’s a finite resource.
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