Now that you have clarified your business growth goals, the next step is to develop and implement your business growth plan.

In effect, this plan outlines how you are going to achieve your goals.

As clear and inspirational your goals are, without implementation they are little more than dreams.

And without an implementation plan, even the best of goals are likely to remain unfulfilled dreams.

From my experience as a consultant assisting clients with planning projects, it seems that the simpler the plan, the more likely … and effectively … it will be implemented.

That being the case, here is an outline for a simple business growth plan consisting of only three key elements.

The Tasks

These are the actions, efforts, work or whatever other term you choose that describes what must be done to achieve your goals.

The simplest way to identify these tasks is to list anything and everything that must be done. 

Describe these tasks in as much detail as necessary to clarify not only what must be done.

Although all implementation tasks are important, they are not equally important.

Once you have completed the task list to your satisfaction, prioritize the tasks in order of importance.  No ties allowed, one ranking per task.

The most important task will number 1; the least important will be the highest number.

And once you have prioritized the task in order of importance, repeat the process using urgency as the criterion.

The most urgent task will number i. — the least important will be the highest number (using the same numbering format).

The final order of priority is based on both importance and urgency.

In other words, the task labeled 1.i is the absolute top priority action.

By way of example, my business growth plan includes attracting more traffic to key webpages.

To help make this happen, I have identified my #1 important task to be making my blog posts more search engine friendly.

But since I know very little about SEO, my #i urgent task is to learn about SEO.

In my case learning about SEO is the absolute top priority action.

Completion Date

These are the completion dates for individual tasks.

Sometimes completion dates are set by external factors and commitments.

In other cases, internal considerations such as time required, sequencing and availability determine individual completion dates.

In my case, my completion date for learning about SEO is 14 days from the start of the 2-week program that is helping me learn what I need to know.

Special Considerations

For most self-employed professionals, planning and managing their service businesses is essentially a do-it-yourself project.

On occasion we hire third party experts to assist with one function or another, in which we lack the requisite knowledge and skills.

These experts share their know-how and expertise in areas such as finance, marketing and technology.

The special considerations component of the identifies which functions we will undertake ourselves and which we will delegate third party experts.

Technoklutz that I am, it’s a huge relief to delegate anything technical to third party experts.

Also included in this component are those individual and resources that we will need to grow our businesses.

It’s Your Growth Plan

One final point on your business growth plan.

Purely and simply, it is a tool to help you grow your business.  Unless you choose to, no one else has to see what you have prepared.

This means that you are free to use whatever format, style and design works best for you.

As long as the plan documents the fundamentals in a manner that is meaningful to you, it can be electronic or hard copy, text in point form or paragraphs, even graphics.

It’s your plan … apply whatever formatting a style that will best help you achieve your goals.