Why you should share your business plan with all your employees
A business plan is typically developed before your business is up and running, when you have few if any employees to weigh in. But it’s important to remember that a business plan is a living document that should be updated and evaluated as you develop your strategic and marketing plans for the coming years. At this stage, it can be extremely beneficial to share your business plan with your employees.
Though some business owners may be reluctant to do this, letting your employees in on how management defines key performance indicators and the main targets will encourage the teams to focus accordingly. One of the first things business consultants will ask as they begin to evaluate your organization is if you’ve shared your business plan with your employees. Doing this is one of the easiest and fastest ways to develop the employee engagement needed for the business to grow.
Engaging employees drive their success
Engaging your employees is the key to strategic planning. If your employees have an understanding of the organization’s mission and the strategies that drive the company, they can have more input on means of improvement. As strongly as upper management may feel that they know what’s best for the organization, the employees are the boots on the ground each and every day – interacting with customers, hearing customers’ pains, and developing pains of their own that are stifling their success.
By sharing your business plan with your employees, you’re giving them a better understanding of the way of the organization, as well as the analytics and data behind some of the key strategic business decisions and the changes you decide to implement. This provides employees with a toolbox that can drive their individual motivation, engagement, and ultimately their success.
Sharing your business plan encourages open communication
Once you have shared your business plan with your employees, ask for their feedback. Now that the company has developed in a way where you have accumulated a substantial team of employees, there might be changes and shifts in the business or industry that you haven’t updated in the business plan. Ask each employee to identify the three things that are being done today that effectively drive business growth and also three things being done that are negatively affecting your business.
Upper management should brainstorm alongside the employees to figure out how the organization can do more of what’s working, and fix or stop what’s not. Once these strategies have been added to the business plan and the annual strategic plan, set monthly goals for each team or department to ensure the company is tracking and moving toward their yearly targets. Doing this together as an organization – regardless of its size – will not only encourage employee engagement, but also ensure that the strategies being developed based on the feedback and core principles of the business plan are aligned.
This exercise will also open the channels of communication and ensure your employees feel like they are a part of the company’s growth, with strategies that they had a hand in developing and can get behind.
Your employees can get behind the company’s vision
You’ve shared your business plan and you’ve gotten employee feedback. Now, your employees have a deeper understanding of the purpose of your company and why you decided to start it in the first place. By understanding the business’s goals and the rationale behind them, the employees have a better idea of the long-term vision of the organization. They know why the company exists, and if the rationale is something they can stand behind.
The more informed your employees are, the more willing they’ll be to support shifts in the business strategy over time. Using the business plan to connect the team with the vision will encourage your employees to stay on track and understand the why. Then, as plans and strategies within the business plan become a reality, the entire organization can celebrate.
H6 Sharing the business plan will keep the right employees
Those who stay with the company after they’ve gained this deep understanding will become valuable and loyal employees. They will share in the company and stakeholder’s vision for the future and understand the role they play in making that vision a reality. And if they think otherwise, hopefully this will be the wake-up call they need to move on so you can continue to staff for the future of the business.
Small steps can have a big impact on your business
Simple strategies like sharing your business plan are ones that can revitalize your business, and ones you might have never considered before you partnered with business consultants. At AHA! Business Consulting, we specialize in helping owners and managers of retail service businesses understand where their time should be focused on so that they can take back control of their business.
If this sounds like something you’ve struggled with, take our AHA! Owner Assessment to determine where to schedule time to focus on improving your company’s growth and profits. Sometimes, it’s the small changes in your day that can have the biggest impact. To learn more about how AHA! Business Consulting can help your business grow, contact us today.