The Road to Absolute Perfection by Bill Valway
by Bill Valway
February 3rd, 2016

Strategic Planning and Business Growth

Do you have a clear vision of where your company is going? If so, do your employees know that vision and feel it like you do? Any organization with goals of growth, efficiency and success has to have a vision. It’s not just about the vision for the individual leadership, but for the entire team.

In general, most entrepreneurs know where they’re going and what the general vision is. This is what gives them the confidence and extra push to take a risk and start a business.

If they didn’t have a vision of where they wanted to be, they wouldn’t have risked as much as they did. But oftentimes new business owners, or even individuals who have owned a business for a while and are stuck in one place, lose or forget the fact that once they know where they want the company to go. They need to share that vision with others.

I’ve certainly been guilty of this over the years. You “feel it” and other people in the company know it, but there’s a difference between knowing and feeling. What did I do? Put it on paper. Taking that that feeling—that vision for my company—and making it into something that was tangible helped immensely. It was finally a reality and it was then something I could now hold onto, share with people and knew that it was going to happen.

So, How?

You have to start out with the basics. What makes your company what it is? What are the company’s core values? What are your personal values?

It seems simple, but once it’s just you and a piece of paper, it can be difficult to turn those feelings or thoughts into words and each word feels like it holds so much weight. But once you have your values written out, really focus on where you see the company in the next year, three years, and if you’re really on a roll, the next ten years.

Don’t let anything hold you back, just get it on paper. What do you see? Be realistic, but also challenge yourself. Don’t let the 4 fatal fears hold you back from setting seemingly unattainable goals. You might end up surprising yourself, and if you don’t reach them, you’ll learn what you could have done better. What kept you from achieving those goals? What are some things that you set out to achieve that will significantly impact the outcome of your business? Put those in there.

The most important part of this process is that you can create a document you can share with your entire team. Even if it’s just two other people, at least they can see where the company is headed, what is required from each individual to get there and how it will benefit each one of them.

First Year

In the first year, be more descriptive. You know the challenges you’re facing so call them out and put it on paper that you and your team are going to overcome those challenges. Get on paper the successes you’re going to have, specific goals and steps to reaching them.

For example, “We’re going to hire on a new installer for the automotive tinting division. We’re going to add an office manager.” Plan for your successes and big accomplishments.

Three Years

Three years out, be a little vaguer than you would be with your first year, but you can still put some meat on it. How many markets are you going to target? How is business going to change and improve? What is your company going to be? How are you going to be recognized as a market leader?

Ten Years

If you can push yourself to knock out the unknown ten years out, do it. Write down those big, hairy, audacious goals. It’s important to get an idea of where you would like to be, seemingly unrealistic or not, because it gives you a target and a timeline to achieve it. After you complete the first year, you realize time is ticking. If you are like me you feel this constant pull that you’re running out of time to achieve these goals. Keep pushing and get it on track.

The problem with most companies in the window film world is that they’re not inspiring. You work for a shop, you decide you can do it better, and you go and start your own shop. The cycle repeats over and over. Hell, I did that exact thing, but I’ve recognized this and I’ve challenged it. This has changed the direction of our company significantly. We don’t follow the status quo. We changed the vision and we all know where it’s heading and what part each of us plays in getting there.

Where is your company going? Make sure your entire team knows the answer.

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