Charting Your Course versus Any Wind Will Do | Compass Point Skip to main content



Here we are…already at the start of the second month of 2023. Is your family business on track with its strategic plan, or is a plan not yet in place?

One of the biggest barriers to family business growth is the lack of a written strategic plan. Why written? Because research shows when you write down your goals, you are 42% more likely to achieve the desired results. Who doesn’t want those odds on their side?

Larger organizations make the investment of time, energy, and a focused team effort to formulate a strategic plan. Committing to writing out a strategic plan annually is how you get your team focused on a small set of clearly articulated outcomes and the actions to produce the desired results. Smart entrepreneurs know and do the same.

Running a business without a strategic plan is like sitting in a sailboat in the middle of the ocean with no destination in mind. No map. No compass. You are literally saying “any wind will do.” When we run our businesses like this, the outcomes are generally not what we’re looking for.

The KEY to a successful strategic plan is a practical, implementable framework developed by the whole team. When done well, it creates clarity, confidence, and direction for the business. Accountability is built in and the owner begins to feel a sense of shared responsibility amongst the team.

We help you create a One Page Strategic Plan that provides a logical framework of critical points that charts the course to drive growth:

  • Core Values
  • Core Purpose
  • Core Competencies
  • Core Customer
  • Brand Promise
  • Business Sandbox
  • BHAG
  • Key 3-Year Thrusts
  • Annual Priorities
  • Quarterly Rocks

A SWOT analysis provides further insight and alignment – creating new ways to see old problems, surfacing new ideas, and aligning the team. It also forces the team to communicate about choices regarding the direction of the company.

Next, identify your BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal). This informs the top five key thrusts (or capabilities) the organization must focus on over the next three years in order to move toward the BHAG.

From here, break down the 3-year key thrusts into Annual Priorities, “What we are going to do this year?” Then, drill down Annual Priorities into Quarterly Rocks, “What we are going to do this quarter, and who is accountable?

This is how things get done – moving from planning to execution. Without action, you are aimlessly adrift.

Do you know the biggest benefit of strategic planning? THE PROCESS ITSELF! When a team works together to think through future challenges and develops strategies to break through those barriers, the resulting Strategic Plan can be a real catalyst for growth.

The direction of a family business – present and future – needs the right compass. Start charting your course and then take the actions necessary to set sail to the desired destination of success.

Chart Your Course

Tom Garrity profile picture
Tom Garrity

Tom has family business in his DNA. His entire career was forged in family-owned companies. This extensive experience in business development, key leadership roles, and practical financial analysis fueled Tom’s quest to help owners build successful businesses while maintaining a strong family unit.

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