I was happy to pick up this quick piece from Jeff Bezos last month on Business Insider. Jeff, founder of Amazon.com, ought to know. In Business Insider’s Instant MBA series, Jeff says Business Plans Are Important and Necessary. He says it’s not about being right and guessing the future correctly. It’s about guiding your business and managing better:
“You know the business plan won’t survive its first encounters with reality. It will always be different. The reality will never be the plan, but the discipline of writing the plan forces you to think through some of the issues and to get sort of mentally comfortable in the space. Then you start to understand, if you push on this knob this will move over here and so on. So, that’s the first step.”
So my conclusion, from Jeff’s advice, is that developing a plan is good for your business, but sticking to that plan, not so much. Develop the plan, start moving, review and revise often. Keep it flexible.
It’s a plan, not a document.