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"Do I need a business strategy?" - Setting the right goals to achieve best growth

Updated: Aug 5, 2022

Most businesses don’t use strategies – which can hold them back from reaching their fullest potential. Director of Firebird, Ian Finlay, explains how intelligent business strategies can maximise growth with just a few key changes.

Developing Business Strategy

Let’s say you’re a business owner or MD, who set up a company aiming to share your passion with like-minded people. Perhaps, after a few years, your profits became comfortable. You reached your target market, and the trade was going well.

So what comes next?

For the vast majority of business owners, the answer to that will be: “Let’s continue as is.”

For the clients we work with at Firebird, the answer is: “We’re ready to go further.” In short, they’re ready to start work on a strategy.

The main benefit of implementing the right business strategy is simple: to achieve sustainable, lasting growth for the medium and long-term.

"The main benefit of implementing a business strategy? To achieve sustainable, lasting growth"

Broadly speaking, the process of developing the right strategy for you can be broken down into three stages:

1. Identifying strategic goals

“Where are you trying to get to?”

2. Defining strategic initiatives

“What can you do to get there?”

3. Creating a tactical action plan

“How will this work in practice?”

A strategist with sufficient experience of running, growing and selling on a business, will collaborate with you across all steps of the process, first drawing out achievable goals based on progress to date. Then, when it comes to defining initiatives, they will focus your attention on different arenas for opportunity.

Could adapting your product be a strong way to boost sales, for example? How about targeting different demographics to expand your customer base, or branching out into new geographical territories?

Very quickly, without you needing to fundamentally change how your business works, new targets with clear strategic strands can open up a wealth of possibilities.

Where most businesses fall down is in the third phase of this process: the execution. This is where the correct tactical action plan can keep your business growth firmly on course.

"Where most businesses fall down is in the execution phase"

At this point, it’s time to pin down the details. How exactly will updated approaches and processes work, for instance? How can they best be broken into simple and measurable chunks? Who will be accountable for each step? What is your timeframe?

At Firebird, partners each bring between 20 and 30 years of business acumen to our clients – with a keen knowledge of what works, and decades of applying a range of different strategic approaches. Independent, clear-sighted and knowledgeable in our sectors, we know how to find the right model for the right organisation; picking up on fresh details and pitfalls that many company insiders will overlook.

If you’d like to know more about possible strategic options for your travel, leisure or education business, contact the Firebird Partnership.

Ian Finlay is co-founder of the Firebird Partnership, and has spent the last 30 years in the travel, leisure and education space: a career encompassing inbound operations, language schools, activity centres, hotels, bars and restaurants, and outbound tour operating.

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