You don’t have to do a formal business plan to get the benefit of business planning. Why not start the planning process today; or, if you’ve done a plan in the past, reinvigorate the planning process. Real planning is modular, and iterative, not step by step. Here are some things you could do today.

  • Set a review schedule now. When are you going to double back and look at results? Put a date on it.
  • Develop assumptions. List them.
  • Review or develop your strategy, the heart of any plan. How are you different, what are you better at? Who are you selling to, and who isn’t your market? What are you not doing, and why is that important?
  • Review or develop milestones: dates, deadlines, activities, budgets, and who’s responsible.
  • Develop your basic numbers, and write them down: sales forecast, expense budgets.

And don’t feel compelled to do all of these today if you can’t. Do just one. Pick a card. Start anywhere, and get going. One step at a time; and you choose which step.

Tim BerryTim Berry

Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software and Follow him on Twitter @Timberry.