At 12Faces, we strongly believe every business owner needs a clear destination in mind for their business; in both the short (say financial quarter) and longer (say 3 years) term. We call these Business GamePlans
Without this, the business is essentially ‘rudderless’ and will drift in unguided and unpredictable directions. Entrepreneurs are famous for “being attracted to the next bright shiny object” and going off in some new direction.
This confuses the staff and makes it difficult for a business to get enough traction to thrive.
Use Pre-designed or Custom GamePlans
There are lifecycle stages and management problems in a businesses life that occur in many businesses. We have assembled off-the-shelf GamePlans to cover many of these so that you don’t have to spend a lot of time researching. You just tap into the best practices we have assembled for you and make any tweaks to customise for your particular business.
Or, you can build a DIY custom GamePlan from scratch for your particular circumstances. We show you how to do this as well.
Three GamePlan Groups
Our GamePlan Resources are cross linked into three groups:
- Business Lifecycle Stage, 3 Year GamePlans: Start-up, Growth, Lifestyle and Exit
- Business Size, 3 Year GamePlans: Solopreneur, Micro, Small and Larger businesses and
- The 12Faces of a well managed business grouped as Quarterly GamePlans: Revenue Sources, Operations and Administration
In 12Faces, GamePlans are the desired destination for the business – Tools are how to get there –
the Diagnostic System presents solutions to issues as they arise
Find What You Need!
There are a lot of resources in 12Faces so it can be a bit daunting finding what you need. Here are a few suggested approaches;
- On this page, we have grouped those resources you are most likely to find helpful building GamePlans.
- For a specific topic (e.g. pricing) you can use the search tool at the very top of every page.
- When you would like to see more of a similar type of information, many pages will have clickable “breadcrumbs” in the page heading. Also, they will have a “category” and “tag”. Clicking on any of those will take you to more in a similar vein. Categories are larger, or wider ranging, groups than tags. An article can be in both.
- Our Diagnostic System allows you to drill down through a series of increasingly specific menus to find useful information. This can be particularly useful when you don’t know exactly what you want, but do have a general idea.
Introduction to GamePlanning
Increasing Sales is often as far as owners look when trying to increase Revenue. In fact, there are a number of other faster and less gruelling ways to increase Revenue. Get started on your Revenue boosting GamePlan with these resources.
Our concept of 3 year and quarterly GamePlans is introduced in this article. It also expands on the tools and other resources designed to integrate and work seamlessly towards achieving the goals of the two GamePlans you have chosen.
Business Life Cycle Related GamePlans
Businesses are like people; they are born, grow, settle down in midlife and eventually exit. We encourage you to have a longer term (we suggest 3 years) GamePlan identifying where you want to be in the lifecycle in 3 years time. Then, shorter GamePlans (we suggest financial quarters) help get your business there. No Life Cycle GamePlan is right or wrong; it’s what best suits you at this time.
Start-up is a very traumatic part of the business life cycle with steep learning curves and plenty of mishaps; just like it is for children. Up to 50% of start-ups fail in their first year!
Because this phase is so complex, a specialised body of knowledge, often referred to as “Lean Start-ups”, has grown up. We offer selected resources on the link above and also recommend “Lean Start-up” methodology.
The big challenge for a business that has chosen to grow is to keep all the 12Faces of your business in harmonious balance.
Above is a link to the starting point for our Diagnostics System which allows you to drill down on whatever topic is on your mind.
Our GamePlan approach – and several of the predefined GamePlans – will be of use. See the list elsewhere on this page. GamePlans and Diagnostics work together with our Tools listed in a separate page off the top site menu.
At some point, you will decide that you are over the constant stresses of growing; at least for now. Your 3 year GamePlan might be to get your business to a place where it runs without such an investment of time and energy. This will give you more time to enjoy other aspects of your life.
Typically, you will focus on the optimisation and staff management aspects of your business in the 12Faces Diagnostic System. This will enable staff to implement with less input from you.
At some point in time your thoughts will turn to selling your business or passing it to the next generation. It typically takes up to 3 years to position a business for exit and this fits nicely as a 3 Year Exit GamePlan.
Always keep in mind that an exit may be thrust upon you at any time. It might be a health or family crisis or it might be that someone makes you an offer “too good to refuse”. Keeping your business always lightly tuned for exit will help get you the best result no matter when the need arises!
This bundle of resources helps to rapidly improve a business experiencing financial hardship.
You save time by working through possible options, executing those that can improve the situation and skipping or postponing those less useful in your particular case.
Business Size Related GamePlans
Small business is sometimes classified by the number of staff employed. Size classifications vary around the world. We have chosen group sizes likely to be facing the same sorts of problems and have assembled resource catalogues for each group. The Size GamePlans typically cover 2-3 years for each phase as you pace your expansion rate.
These are businesses run by a single founder/owner. The Solopreneur does everything in their business. They are very busy people as a consequence. They will have very little time to focus on anything other than the “doing” part of their business, which brings them an Income, and a simple marketing system that brings them the work they need. All the while leaving enough time to do that work.
The issues faced by Solo and Micro businesses are similar, we suggest you read our resources on Micro business.
Becoming a Micro Business Owner introduces a number of “firsts” for the owner. Among them is finding, leading and earning enough income to cover the first employee. If you are contemplating an upgrade from Solopreneur, read more here on what to expect.
If you are already a micro-business owner, our Resource Catalogue introduces our relevant resources.
The step up from Micro to Small Business brings a different set of “firsts”. For example, you are likely to appoint your “first” middle managers. If you are contemplating an upgrade to Small Business, read more here on what to expect.
If you are already a small-business owner, a quick scan might focus your mind on the most important issues for this stage of a business lifecycle.
Medium (20-199 Staff) and Large Business (>199 Staff)
Businesses of this size generally have planning and management systems in place already. So, we don’t provide specific GamePlans. However, our GamePlan approach, Tools and Diagnostic System will work just as well for this group so we invite you to select from our full range of resources.
Revenue Boosting Quarterly GamePlans
Increasing sales is often as far as owners look when trying to increase revenue. In fact, there are a number of other faster and less gruelling ways to increase revenue. Get started on your revenue boosting GamePlan with these resources.
The Growth365 (G365) Course is a pre-designed quarterly GamePlan which explores the topic of “What might stop your growth” in the first of three lessons. This lesson highlights a number of reasons growth might not be effective for you. It is worth a quick scan at least to see if growth is on your horizon. The other two lessons cover “Planning for Growth” and “How to execute a Double your Profit strategy”. They may be of interest but not as relevant for a Micro Business.
Improving Operations Quarterly GamePlans
Operations loosely refers to all the processes and resources used to carry out the work of the business. There are a very large number of improvements that are possible. They can be loosely grouped into those optimizing by reducing existing costs and redundancies and those improving productivity to produce more efficiently.
If your business has been operating for a while, it most likely has accumulated “barnacles” that are slowing down progress and diverting resources to activities no longer key. This quarterly GamePlan Outline identifies typical opportunities for improving the operation of a business. Any such cost savings typically go straight to the bottom line profit so optimizing is a very useful program to run; perhaps annually to continually harvest savings.
Our business improvement resources are grouped by topic in the Diagnostics System. Look though the topics at the high level overview you reach on the link above, then drill down on ones of interest to explore more quarterly GamePlan options.
Quarterly GamePlans to improve Administrative Processes
Administration is often the task least-loved by small business owners so it is often underexploited for productive improvement. As a consequence, bad trends are sometimes not spotted until they turn toxic. In turn that consumes money, owner’s time and increases owners stress. In a well balanced 12Faces business, this risk is greatly reduced.
Eventually, administration can be subjected to continuous incremental improvement (so called Kaizen) but initially, it might benefit from a quarterly GamePlan overall or in specific areas of admin to make large and quick gains.
Common areas in administration that lend themselves to GamePlans include;
- Human Resources: like leading and incentivizing staff
- Financial management: like cashflow, useful accounting systems
- Planning: GamePlans and more detailed strategies
- Profitability: monitoring and streamlining for profit
Look through the opportunities for improvement grouped by topic on the link above. Drill down in areas you think might be worthwhile considering as a candidate for a quarterly GamePlan. Then use the techniques we teach to prioritize your candidate GamePlans and begin working though them over several quarters in priority.
The Turnaround90 Course is a pre-designed quarterly GamePlan which explores how to rapidly improve a business experiencing financial hardship.
You save time by working though possible options, executing those that can improve the situation and skipping or postponing those less useful in your particular case.
There will be many issues that come up in your business that we have not covered or not covered clearly enough.
We have other tools to help clarify how to attack the issues that are worrying you. Please use them as much as you wish. We can respond and use your input to improve our service to others who come after you.
It can be lonely being a business leader. Sometimes you will feel you can benefit from another person’s advice or guidance but can’t ask staff. We offer a Performance Coaching Service on an as-requested basis for just these times. Use the link above to learn more.
Our Community Forum is open to any registered business as a FREE service to our community. You can post a query here for others to comment. You can, and are very welcome to, respond to questions yourself.