Turning Strategy into Results
How businesses can refocus on building a strategy for their business in 2021.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could start looking to the future instead of running triage simply to survive 2020?
For many businesses, building a strategy for 2021 is an absolute must, in order to have a better year and to start moving forward.
If you’re anything like we are, building a stronger and more realistic idea of our future was an absolute necessity to move forward. We’re hoping that more business owners can start standing up to the foundational decay and upheaval that was 2020 and start looking to the future in 2021.
Here’s how businesses can prioritize and refocus on building their 2021 strategy.
First, think about any missions from 2020 that became sidetracked or irrelevant due to the pandemic. Are you thinking of them? Good.
Now think, would any of these strategies/missions be applicable today if your business was in good standing?
If the answer is “no”, you can safely move on to creating a 2021 strategy from scratch.
If the answer is “yes”, it’s time to dissect your old strategy to find the parts that still make sense for this new year coming up.
Either way, 2020 was a hurdle year for us all. If your business is coming out of it intact, you should be thankful you’re able to take another shot at it in 2021.
But many of us will need to pivot our businesses, and here’s how:
- Plan to work outside of your expertise
Whether this means targeting new types of clients/new audiences, working in a new industry, or expanding your sales channels, working outside of your expertise means doing things that you or your business have not done before.
If you were unable to do business the way you were used to in 2020, you must pursue new avenues in order to get your business in front of paying customers. They might not be the same customers before, but when it’s sink or swim, that doesn’t really matter.
If you pivoted without a plan in 2020 and were scraping by to make ends meet, but found a way through unconventional methods, now is a time to refine those methods into a solid strategy.
- Work smart, not hard
Everyone was working hard in 2020. No, really. EVERYONE. If you weren’t working hard at a job, you were likely working hard to find a job.
2021 is the year you should focus on working smart. Take what you learned for your business in 2020 and create a strategy that makes sense in order to grow your business.
If it’s focusing more on one of those unconventional sales channels you discovered in 2020, go for it. Just make sure it’s incorporated into your strategy for the new year, and you’re able to measure it to know whether or not it is working.
- Solve a common problem for clients
Those clients we’re talking about, they might be new ones you picked up in one of your 2020 pivots, or they might be old clients who also weathered the storm and came out on the other side with you.
Either way, if you’re not solving problems for clients in 2021, they’ll go out and find someone who will!
And remember, it’s okay if you’re losing a few clients to focus on your greater strategic vision. But make sure your team is on board and knows what you’re prioritizing this year.
- Decide where you want to go
Assess your business’s strengths and weaknesses, and take a look at the most profitable areas of operation. Then, make a strategy surrounding those strengths while looking for market opportunities to expand into 2021.
If the fundamental purpose of your business is the same, but you’re doing things differently since the pandemic started, you may just need to revamp your operational processes. If the fundamental purpose of your business has changed since the start of 2020, it’s best to revise your overarching plan and long term goals based on the changes you have seen.
Remember to ask your valued clients how you can continue to provide value for them and take their answers to heart. They’ll not only continue to do business with you but will likely refer more business your way for lending an empathetic ear.
─ Let’s make 2021 your year! How has your strategy changed this year?